$1.8 billion: Forbes values Bucs as world's No. 47 sports team
Forbes has released its annual ranking of the top 50 sports franchises in the world, and the Bucs check in at No. 47, with a valuation of $1.8 billion, up 19 percent from last year.
The magazine's NFL valuations came out last September, so that isn't news -- the only thing new is how the Bucs rank against other non-NFL franchises, which is largely the same. Manchester United, also owned by the Glazer family, is ranked No. 3 with a valuation of $3.69 billion, though that's only up 11 percent from a year ago. The Glazer family bought the Bucs in 1995 for $192 million, so sometime in the next year or so, the franchise will be worth 10 times what they paid for it 22 years ago.
Only four NFL teams have a lower value by Forbes' calculations -- the Saints, Bengals, Lions and Bills, with the last three the only NFL teams not to crack the top 50 overall. By Forbes count, the Bucs' franchise has grown from a valuation of $1.225 billion to $1.8 billion in just two years -- that's a 47 percent increase. By comparison, from 2009 to 2013, their value for the Bucs actually went down, from $1.085 billion to $1.067 billion, so a steady rise isn't always inevitable.
Even the 19 percent rise is somewhat middle of the pack for NFL franchises -- the Rams literally doubled in value with their move to Los Angeles, to $2.9 billion, and while the rest of the top 10 NFL franchises saw an increase of 11 percent or less, about half the league saw a growth of 20 percent or more.