The Golden State Warriors have been named ‘Franchise of the Decade’ across all professional sports teams by the Sports Business Journal/Daily, it was announced today. Over the last 10 years, the Warriors have demonstrated innovation, led the league and all professional sports in a variety of business categories and won three NBA Championships, in addition to building and opening Chase Center, the team’s new, state-of-the-art arena in San Francisco’s Mission Bay neighborhood.
“We are truly humbled to be recognized with this prestigious honor by the Sports Business Journal, especially when you consider the number of outstanding organizations across all sports,” said Warriors President and Chief Operating Officer Rick Welts. “The past decade has provided our fans, business partners and all constituents with many incredible memories, and it’s the hard work and dedication of every single player and employee that enabled us to achieve our goals and ultimately share in this organization-wide, strength in numbers recognition.”
Beginning in 2010 with the announcement that the Warriors were purchased by a group of investors headed by Joe Lacob and Peter Guber, and with the 2011 hiring of Hall of Famer Rick Welts to oversee all business operations for the Warriors, along with Head Coach Steve Kerr taking the helm for the 2014-15 season and the tenured basketball leadership with General Manager and President of Basketball Operations Bob Myers, the franchise has compiled an extensive list of NBA milestones and records to-date.
In addition to the team’s three NBA titles (2015, 2017, 2018), and five-straight NBA Finals appearances (2015-2019), the first NBA team to do so since the Boston Celtics (1957-1966), Golden State boasts a current active sellout streak of 355 games. The team has sold out every home game each of the last six seasons (regular season and playoffs), a run that started during the 2011-2012 campaign. In addition, the Warriors have over 40,000 fans in the Dub Club, previously known as the Season Ticket Holder Priority Wait List.
Golden State was named ‘Team of the Year’ by Sports Business Journal/Daily in 2014 and 2016, and was named a finalist times (2014, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019). At the 2016 MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference in Boston, the Warriors were named recipients of the ‘Best Analytics Organization’ following the team’s investment and implementation of, among other data-capturing devices, SportVU cameras, to monitor player movement throughout the course of a game. The Warriors were the first team in NBA history to unveil several new creative tech elements including the hosting of an interactive live stream of practice on its website with Google+ Hangouts, the first-ever sound amplification testing in the NBA to bring sounds of the game to every fan inside Oracle Arena, the installation of an Instagram Wall at Oracle Arena, the creation of a team app on the Google Glass platform, the installation of Apple Pay inside their arena, the installation of beacons and integrate proximity technology at Oracle Arena and much more. In addition, the Warriors were the first team to unveil the first modern short-sleeve jersey during the 2013-14 season.
With the opening of Chase Center in September 2019, the Warriors successfully completed construction for the first and only privately-financed sports venue built on private property in the modern era of sports. The Warriors launched an industry-first membership program for Chase Center, where unlike any current structure in professional sports, Chase Center members will be fully refunded the amount of their membership cost after the 30-year membership term. Chase Center also features largest square footage of surface LED space on a scoreboard in the NBA.
The team has also defined success in corporate partnerships by leading the league in revenue for each of the last three years and increased their revenue by over 1,000% during this past decade. In addition, in marketing, the Warriors lead the NBA in total engagements (319.5 million) and racked up 7.5 billion total impressions during the 2018-19 NBA season. Additionally, the NBA named the Warriors 2014-15 ‘Co-Retailer of the Year,’ an annual award given by the league recognizing best practices in team merchandise sales and operations. The team led the league in merchandise sales, both online and in-arena, for four consecutive seasons (2014-2018).
The Warriors have also seen success embracing international fans in a variety of heritage and cultural celebrations over the last 10 seasons, and, in addition, became the first team to launch an official Weibo account, a Chinese social media platform, ahead of the team’s NBA Global Games trip to China in 2013. On February 20, 2015, the Warriors became the first team in the NBA to wear Chinese New Year themed alternate jerseys, honoring the Chinese New Year.
The Warriors have continued to impact the Bay Area through community efforts under the lead of the Warriors Community Foundation’s President of the Board Nicole Lacob. The Warriors Community Foundation has granted over $12 million in impact to local non-profits since its inception in 2012, one of the highest financial amounts across all NBA foundations in that timespan. The funds directly support education and youth development in the Bay Area. In addition, Warriors Basketball Camp led the NBA in youth basketball camps held and total camper participation.
The Santa Cruz Warriors, the Warriors’ NBA G-League affiliate, was recognized as the first-ever G League Franchise of the Year for the organization’s accomplishments during the 2017-18 season, along with winning then-called D League Championship during the 2014-15 season. At the 2019 NBA 2K Draft, the Warriors Gaming Squad made league history by drafting Chiquita Evans, the first and to-date only women to be drafted, and to compete, in the league.