Comcast Spectacor has decided to invest $250 million into a full-scale renovation of Wells Fargo Center (22 years old), as opposed to building a new venue. The addition of new court and rink-side suites, 2 lounges, widened concourses and revamped player locker rooms are among the planned upgrades. The construction will take place over the next 3 summers (to be completed in ’21), so not to interfere with the Philadelphia Flyers’ or 76ers’ (anchor tenants) home schedules. Estimates on a tear-down and build-new plan (on the same site) were projected to be in the $750 million range.
Howie Long-Short: In addition to the Wells Fargo Center, Comcast Spectacor owns the Philadelphia Flyers, the Maine Mariners (ECHL), the Philadelphia Wings (NLL) and the Philadelphia Fusion (OWL). The Comcast Corporation (CMCSA) subsidiary paid off the balance remaining on the initial constructions loans back in 2016, freeing up cash flow needed for the renovations. For FY17, CMCSA reported adjusted EBITDA increased 6.2% to $28.1 billion; but, Corporate, Other and Eliminations, the sector of the business that contains Spectacor and Xfinity mobile, weren’t responsible for that increase. In fact, the sector experienced a $1.4 billion loss in ’17 (compared to a $919 million loss in ’16).
Fan Marino: No NHL team had a better record than the Flyers (18-5-2) over the first 2 months of 2018. The catalyst for the success was early December decision by coach Dave Hakstol to assign stars Claude Giroux and Jakub Voracek to 2 different lines. Since then, Giroux is tied for 2nd in the league in points (46), Voracek is tied for 12th (39) and the team has gone from out of the playoff picture to just two points behind Washington for first place in the Metropolitan Division. It must be noted the team has lost its first 3 games in March, though one was a shoot-out loss.
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