TAMPA, Fla. - In this week's Tampa Bay Business Journal segment, editor Alexis Muellner the Tampa Bay Rays' new Chief Business Officer, the upcoming annual Business of Sports seminar, and the larger impact behind the University of Tampa's tobacco ban.
This week the Business Journal's cover story is on the Tampa Bay Rays' new Chief Business Officer. The team hired Jeff Cogen who had been with the Nashville Predators for the last five years.
Cogan had a lot of success with Nashville getting people to go to games. In 2015, the Rays finished dead last in attendance. The team averaged just 15,403 fans a game, more than two thousand fewer than the Cleveland Indians, who came in second-to-last in attendance.
A lot of Cogan's focus will be on giving value to season ticket holders and making the game an experience for families.
You can read the entire interview with Cogan by clicking here.
The Business Journal holds its annual Business of Sports seminar at Amalie Arena on February.
Instead of doing longer panel discussion, there will be a series of short one-on-one chats with some of the area's top sports leaders.
Among the features speakers will be Tampa Bay Rays President Brian Auld, Tampa Bay Buccaneers COO Brian Ford, Tampa Bay Rowdies Assistant General Manager Perry Van der Beck, FOX Sports Florida Vice President of Sales Marc LeSage, Fox Sports Sun broadcaster Orestes Destrade, and retired MLB outfielders and Tampa native Gary Sheffield.
The goal of the talks is to learn as much as we can about the strategies our teams are putting in place to win on and off the field.
If you are interested in attending, you can register here.
The University of Tampa is following suit and will ban all smoking and tobacco use on its campus beginning August 1st. One big reason for the ban is the changing attitudes towards cigarettes and tobacco.
"If you think back in the 60s forty-five percent of the population smoked," said Alexis. "That was now down to, I think, eighteen percent in 2012. It's a bit of a lonely path for people who still use tobacco."
Alexis says from a marketing point-of-view, universities have to follow the national trend of placing smokers in remote areas to better the quality of life for both smokers and non-smokers alike.
For more information on these stories, click on the video player or pick up this week's Tampa Bay Business Journal available on newsstands.