As part of the Dallas Stars’ new multi-sport facilities management initiative, the franchise has acquired The MAC, a 38,000-square-foot property in Lewisville. The team also plans to construct a 90,000-square-foot multi-sport facility in Farmers Branch.
With eight youth ice rinks up and running throughout North Texas, the Stars have already established a substantial youth sports footprint. But Stars’ CEO Brad Alberts says in order to grow this line of business, scale is the only way to do it.
“The main revenue driver for youth sports facilities is dues from parents,” Alberts says. “And there is a cap on dues that parents are willing to pay. Growing percentage-wise, on an annual basis, would have been tough if we just stuck to our ice rinks. So, the way we are looking to scale our youth sports business is through the accumulation of multi-sport facilities. The second main revenue driver in this business is sponsorship activations in and around these buildings.”
In late October, the City of Farmers Branch and the Dallas Stars agreed to a 25-year ground lease and finalized plans to build a multi-sport facility, which will house 16 volleyball courts and eight basketball courts. The naming rights to the building belong to Stars, but the details are not finalized.
“There is a tremendous need for basketball and volleyball facilities throughout North Texas,” Alberts said.
Farmers Branch will utilize already approved city-issued bonds to build the complex. The new building will be adjacent to the Children’s Health StarCenter in Farmers Branch along Interstate 35-E service road, south of Pike Street. The Stars expect to break ground on the facility in January 2023 and expect it to be completed by December 2023.
The City of Farmers Branch projects approximately 900,000 visitors to set foot in the new multi-sport site each year.
For The MAC, which has eight USA Volleyball regulation courts, four NBA regulation hardwood basketball courts, a full concession stand, and food court area, Alberts says the facility will be renamed under Dallas Stars branding.
“This is a great long-term asset for us. It is going to allow us to grow our top-line revenue and bottom-line profitability,” he said.
As part of the acquisition and ground-up build in Farmers Branch, the Stars have purchased the largest youth volleyball organization in DFW—Texas Advantage Volleyball—as well as the 14-team organization Attack Volleyball Club. The two clubs will merge under the Texas Advantage Volleyball name and play its games at The MAC and the new Farmers Branch facility, once its built. Alberts says he does not expect to purchase any youth basketball organizations.
No significant renovations are expected to be made to The MAC.
Alberts says his team is also looking at a potential purchase of an outdoor sports facility, but makes no promises on the buy. “I’m not aiming to build a youth sports monopoly,” he said. “But I do have a vision of where I want to take this division financially, and as long as we continue to take advantage of smart opportunities, this will be a significant part of our business.”