What is the players' share?

Discussion in 'General Pro Player Discussion' started by PeteD, Nov 8, 2012.

  1. PeteD

    PeteD Legend

    Jan 28, 2005
    The Commonwealth -- of PA
    Roger Federer, President of the ATP Player Council, continues to be involved in negotiations to get players more money. (Nadal and Djokovic were on the Council but they have left.) I know there was a thread on this a ways back (and some threads on WTA money), but my question relates to what portion actually goes to the players. An article in the New York Times last month said player prizes were "believed" to be 20-30% of revenues of "ATP events" but the article also estimated players get 17% of the AO revenues, and at the US Open, 11%.

    Are these percentages accurate? Let's look at the O2 right now. Average cost of a seat maybe at least $ 200 (about 125 pounds). I know there are some cheaper seats but as the week draws on, there are no cheap seats and you can pay thousands of pounds for the best seats.

    The tourney fills 18,000 seats, twice a day. 8-day tourney. That is 288,000 tickets at $200 = over $56 million. Sponsors pay ?? Say they pay equal to ticket receipts. Plus the tourney gets money for TV rights and from concessions. My estimates and/or math could be off but I think the tourney could be grossing $200 million or more.

    The player participation fees and prizes are posted. Total prizes for singles are about $7.5 million, assuming they pay out a $1 million bonus for undefeated champion. Doubles prizes are about one-third as much as singles. So we are at $10 million for the players, from $200 million for the tourney.

    That would be 5% of revenues to the players. Just a first stab guess. Anybody know more or care to comment?
  2. Prisoner of Birth

    Prisoner of Birth Banned

    Aug 21, 2012
    I know nothing but I really wish the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th rounders were paid way more than they are right now. It would be the best thing for Tennis.
  3. PeteD

    PeteD Legend

    Jan 28, 2005
    The Commonwealth -- of PA
    I agree with that, and more for qualifiers too
  4. Crisstti

    Crisstti Legend

    Jul 8, 2011
    That seems actually outrageous :-?
  5. Federerkblade

    Federerkblade Professional

    Dec 31, 2009

    Ha but true
  6. dominikk1985

    dominikk1985 Legend

    Feb 11, 2011
    well you also have to consider costs. the Arena has to be paid, personell, umpires, organisation comittee, other facilities and so an also. probably the ATP gets something too and then there are taxes.

    you have to subtract all costs first before you can calculate the players share. still they should probably get more but you shouldn't underestimate the costs of such a tournament.
  7. Tshooter

    Tshooter Hall of Fame

    Sep 12, 2007
    I think the issue is a bit more involved then a simple look at the gross tournament revenue verse the players cut, however, for USO it's approximately 14% of tournament revenue based on 2010 numbers.

    About 177 million in tournament revenue and 25 million in prize money. It's public information.
  8. Bobby Jr

    Bobby Jr Legend

    Jul 5, 2010
    Yeah, as dominikk1985 says above, you have to include the costs of the event.

    - Hiring the dome for 2 weeks (they have to set up the court etc) would cost in the millions.
    - Lighting - hundreds of thousands for an event like that
    - Getting the tennis courts installed (including the practice court), wouldn't be surprised if costs crept up near a million.
    - signage, posters, media placement - millions of dollars
    - design work - tens of thousands or more per year
    - staff - in the millions of dollar once you consider all the staff needed for an event like this (a GM, doctors, security, chefs, hosts, selectors/trainers for the ballkids)
    - tv gear - specialist sport coverage also including the tech for all the commentator's booths to be hooked up/wired in.
    - Hawkeye hiring
    - Media centre space
    - Accounting/legal consultancy

    Costs for events like these are plenty and add up very quickly. I doubt we'll see the operating budget for it anytime soon.

    FWIW, the revenue calculations in the original post seem high also.
  9. PeteD

    PeteD Legend

    Jan 28, 2005
    The Commonwealth -- of PA
    There are public claims for revenues but are they accurate? Not sure where you get $177 million. Wall St. Journal claimed it was $215 million in 2011:
    World Tennis magazine claimed the USO 2012 took in $218 million and players' take was 8.6%.

    I have a feeling the ATP executives don't reveal costs, which would include salaries that are rumored to be rather high for their skill level. I'd wager pro tennis has a lot of good ol' boy stuff going on and the players are getting shafted.
  10. sundaypunch

    sundaypunch Hall of Fame

    May 17, 2011
    That's what happens when you have an unorganized group of players that have no real negotiating leverage.
  11. tistrapukcipeht

    tistrapukcipeht Professional

    Mar 13, 2012
    Only Umpires are paid, the people that work are volunteers , have you ever seen or heard a champions speech?
  12. Goosehead

    Goosehead Legend

    Nov 2, 2012
    A bloke in Brighton, England.
    if you look on tennis.com under players and rankings sub-banner along the top there is a prizemoney list...

    only the world top 22 rank earned over $1 million..for the whole year..whats that ? about £800'000 ??..its about 4 weeks pay for wayne rooney..

    ok the top 10 are getting plenty but itsmeant to be a global sport but alot of players get provincial pay..all the top 150-200 players should be getting way more..in england/britain we often hear of men / women giving up tennis because they can have a stable salary, and/or earn more as an ex-pro tennis coach somewhere.
  13. PeteD

    PeteD Legend

    Jan 28, 2005
    The Commonwealth -- of PA
    It's an interesting list, top 100 by earnings, I guess it's year to date. Pre-expense, pre-tax. I wonder what typical pro player expenses are.

    1 Novak Djokovic Serbia $9,953,737
    2 Roger Federer Switzerland $7,424,842
    3 Andy Murray Scotland $5,124,230
    4 Rafael Nadal Spain $4,997,448
    5 David Ferrer Spain $4,041,340
    6 Juan Martin del Potro Argentina $2,775,003
    7 Tomas Berdych Czech Republic $2,593,967
    8 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga France $2,168,640
    9 Janko Tipsarevic Serbia $1,833,737
    10 Richard Gasquet France $1,357,677
    11 Radek Stepanek Czech Republic $1,345,031
    12 Nicolas Almagro Spain $1,334,555
    13 John Isner United States $1,334,332
    14 Juan Monaco Argentina $1,242,704
    15 Milos Raonic Canada $1,191,394
    16 Marin Cilic Croatia $1,186,306
    17 Alexandr Dolgopolov Ukraine $1,171,600
    18 Gilles Simon France $1,105,586
    19 Marcel Granollers Spain $1,093,338
    20 Philipp Kohlschreiber Germany $1,063,408
    21 Kei Nishikori Japan $1,044,847
    22 Fernando Verdasco Spain $1,005,846
    23 Andreas Seppi Italy $947,316
    24 Sam Querrey United States $923,211
    25 Jurgen Melzer Austria $917,106
    26 Bob Bryan United States $916,603
    27 Mike Bryan United States $916,603
    28 Stanislas Wawrinka Switzerland $902,450
    29 Mikhail Youzhny Russia $879,840
    30 Florian Mayer Germany $821,877
    31 Tommy Haas Germany $818,595
    32 Viktor Troicki Serbia $763,366
    33 Leander Paes India $762,495
    34 Feliciano Lopez Spain $723,420
    35 Kevin Anderson South Africa $711,108
    36 Daniel Nestor Canada $696,713
    37 Julien Benneteau France $663,888
    38 Denis Istomin Uzbekistan $660,205
    39 Pablo Andujar Spain $658,528
    40 Michael Llodra France $644,605
    41 Max Mirnyi Belarus $631,720
    42 Mardy Fish United States $622,850
    43 Marc Lopez Spain $618,260
    44 Carlos Berlocq Argentina $593,827
    45 Marcos Baghdatis Cyprus $582,812
    46 Albert Ramos Spain $578,848
    47 Thomaz Bellucci Brazil $568,569
    48 Lukasz Kubot Poland $560,367
    49 Jarkko Nieminen Finland $555,650
    50 Andy Roddick United States $549,286
    51 Jeremy Chardy France $544,400
    52 Robert Lindstedt Sweden $535,235
    53 Fabio Fognini Italy $533,149
    54 Xavier Malisse Belgium $527,763
    55 Bernard Tomic Australia $527,353
    56 Ivan Dodig Croatia $524,730
    57 Nikolay Davydenko Russia $506,247
    58 Benoit Paire France $502,783
    59 Robin Haase Netherlands $499,471
    60 Mahesh Bhupathi India $499,173
    61 Horia Tecau Romania $497,956
    62 Rohan Bopanna India $495,231
    63 Ryan Harrison United States $480,018
    64 Jerzy Janowicz Poland $477,833
    65 Martin Klizan Slovakia $462,599
    66 Philipp Petzschner Germany $441,549
    67 Nicolas Mahut France $436,167
    68 Guillermo Garcia-Lopez Spain $433,242
    69 Alex Bogomolov Jr. Russia $430,710
    70 Matthew Ebden Australia $429,771
    71 Alejandro Falla Colombia $427,051
    72 Grigor Dimitrov Bulgaria $413,047
    73 Edouard Roger-Vasselin France $410,585
    74 Nenad Zimonjic Serbia $409,497
    75 Lukas Rosol Czech Republic $402,106
    76 Flavio Cipolla Italy $399,726
    77 Santiago Giraldo Colombia $395,445
    78 Mariusz Fyrstenberg Poland $390,146
    79 Lukas Lacko Slovakia $386,716
    80 Marinko Matosevic Australia $382,103
    81 Marcin Matkowski Poland $380,750
    82 Paul-Henri Mathieu France $378,879
    83 Sergiy Stakhovsky Ukraine $378,835
    84 Brian Baker United States $376,262
    85 Gael Monfils France $367,722
    86 David Goffin Belgium $367,523
    87 Lleyton Hewitt Australia $365,620
    88 Jean-Julien Rojer Netherlands $362,923
    89 Gilles Muller Luxembourg $360,715
    90 Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureshi Pakistan $358,384
    91 Olivier Rochus Belgium $355,911
    92 Yen-Hsun Lu Chinese Taipei $354,504
    93 Leonardo Mayer Argentina $353,633
    94 Jonathan Marray England $347,492
    95 Ivo Karlovic Croatia $345,527
    96 Filippo Volandri Italy $338,306
    97 Benjamin Becker Germany $338,127
    98 Frederik Nielsen Denmark $334,901
    99 Mikhail Kukushkin Kazakhstan $333,009
    100 David Nalbandian Argentina $325,263
  14. Tshooter

    Tshooter Hall of Fame

    Sep 12, 2007
    I got it from the horses mouth.

    A requirement of the USTA's tax-exempt status is to make public disclosure of its financials using IRS Form 990.

    I got $177 million (rounded down) from line item "tournament related" in Part VIII "statement of revenue." I ignored $1.3 million of "tennis program fees" because I don't know what it means and not sure it is USO related and I ignored "ball tests fees" as immaterial. Call it 178 if you prefer -- it doesn't effect the players percent much.

    I got $25 million (rounded down) in prize money from the line item "event prize money/other" in Part IX "statement of functional expenses."

    Those two numbers were the components of the 14% figure representing the players share of the tournament revenue.

    There is about $47 million of "tennis tournament" revenue that shows up on the National Tennis Center (an affiliated entity of the USTA) Form 990 that would get you to $224 but I assume (but do not know for sure at first glance) if I slogged through the rules that the $47 is included on the USTA form in the $178. (The $47 million appears to represent admissions and merchandise only.)

    On your other point, the USTA is not "atp executives." The USTA, again related to its tax exempt status, must disclose compensation for officers, directors, key employees and highest compensated employees as well as independent contractors.

    It must also disclose its expenses.
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2012
  15. PeteD

    PeteD Legend

    Jan 28, 2005
    The Commonwealth -- of PA
    Fascinating and helpful information! It is amazing what you can get online these days, and of course from knowledgeable people.
    Question remains, though, are the players getting shafted?
    Figures are murky. USTA reported in 2011 Total Revenue of $205M. I really doubt NTC revenue is in there -- why would they report it twice? NTC revenue should be added (as is prize money), giving revenues more like $230 milion, closer to what Wall St. Journal reported in their article. USTA financial statement for 2008-9 is online at:
    It lists US Open alone as generating over $200 M. The same statement says USTA owns most of Cincinnatti and some of Indian Wells, which may also be separately reported. So without more information, I don't see that we have a fair idea of USTA revenues.
    On the player payout side, USTA reports "event prize money/other." I would take the published prizes list, as the articles originally cited did ($7.5 M), rather than USTA's unclear "prizes/other" figure, which is (surprise!?) much higher.
    Maybe I am favoring the players, as clear underdogs in any contest against the owners, but so far my best guess is, player take = about 5%, or even lower.
  16. citybert

    citybert Hall of Fame

    Nov 9, 2011
    I believe the revenue share is confidential information but I've heard 30/70, whereas most other sports(in the US) are much closer to 50/50.

    Plus there are post retirement benefits, I think there is none or very little for ATP/WTA.

    Also don't forget players have costs too, coaches, travel/lodging, Physios(for the top 10) maybe. otherwise they use the tournament ones.
  17. ollinger

    ollinger Legend

    Nov 24, 2004
    New Jersey
    ^^ Comparisons with other sports are a little meaningless as many tennis (and golf) tournaments are run to benefit local charities or non-profit (by legal definition) national tennis organizations. Major sports leagues only divide revenue between players, owners, and expenses.
  18. citybert

    citybert Hall of Fame

    Nov 9, 2011
    Oh yes, I def agree. Only comparing b/c it's a sport, there are too many reasons why they can't do that and you mentioned some good ones.

    Also a lot of the major sports get a huge bulk of their revenue from TV contracts that are locked up for 5 years plus and are in the billions of dollars. Not sure how the TV contracts work for ATP/WTA, but they are def not as lucrative as those for NBA, NFL, MLB, premiership, etc. In addition many teams also have their own TV networks.
  19. citybert

    citybert Hall of Fame

    Nov 9, 2011
    Interesting. Top 10 made over 40% of the top 100. I wonder if there is a list of all their earnings. ie sponsorships/endorsements,appearance fees, shoe contracts etc..

    The top 10 would probably make 60% of the top 100 in that list
  20. PeteD

    PeteD Legend

    Jan 28, 2005
    The Commonwealth -- of PA
    Also it's too bad they only had top 100. There are 128 players, plus qualifiers = maybe 160 players travelling around the world, usually with at least one coach or team member, to the big tournies. Would be interesting to see how much they all get in prizes and appearance fees. Wouldn't surprise me if many names we know in the draws are running at a loss.
  21. citybert

    citybert Hall of Fame

    Nov 9, 2011
    Let's face it, and it's sad but tennis is really a sport on the decline overall. Very Rarely does the best athlete in school play tennis, it's usually soccer or football or basketball. Not saying that the best athlete is the best tennis player but only an indication of the popularity. Walk into a foot locker in the 90s and they have a bunch of tennis sneakers, today, they don't carry any.

    Coming from a tennis lover here.:cry:
  22. Tshooter

    Tshooter Hall of Fame

    Sep 12, 2007
    $205 M total revenue in 2011 ? What 205 M are you referring to ?

    Yr 2010 Form 990 "total rev" = $205 but it includes non-USO revenue (most notably USTA membership fees). Which is why I went with 177.

    2009 GAAP income statement shows $205 "US Open" revenue and "total op revenue" of $267 (includes non-USO revenue).

    We're not the only ones struggling to nail down the precise number. Check the city of NY audit completed in 2005. The landlord (NYC) and the tenant (USTA) were about $20 M apart on the revenue number even after the first round of back and forths (though to be fair they were interested in the calculation of revenue as it was defined in their lease not for purposes of either a Form 990 or GAAP financial statements. So you might expect some differing opinions on what the lease intended to include.)

    But we should at least be able to nail down the USTAs position on revenue. A reconciliation between the item "Program Service Revenue" on the Form 990 and the income statement item "US Open" would be helpful.

    If you do add in the NTC number you get about $224 M for 2010.

    The players take would be about 11%. So at least we should agree it is between 11% and 14%. And should be able to nail it down with a little more investigation.

    Your post got a little garbled at the end, I think. You went from USO numbers to including another event (the O2 event) when you referred to
    7.5 M prize money. Hence, your 5% is way off.

    The $25 million prize money appears accurate. It's right from the Form 990. The USO daily draw sheets actually breaks it down in detail. The total at approx $25 million is actually under reported because it doesn't include the USO Series bonus payouts which typically get paid to some extent. For example, this year Djoker won the US Series and made it to the USO finals so he got extra cash. The rich get richer....
  23. PeteD

    PeteD Legend

    Jan 28, 2005
    The Commonwealth -- of PA
    I see your point on the 7.5 M. Interesting that NYC had a hard time determining USTA revenue -- Maybe Cincinnatti or IW money was an issue -- if you have a link for that handy, sounds interesting. Anyway what kind of lease involves off-site revenue? Sounds like the landlord from hell!

    The tennis magazine article may have had info that they don't want to attribute, so for now I think estimates of 8%-11%-14% will have to do. But the fairness of that is only one issue. Like Federer has been saying, the distribution of prize money, and making it possible for new players, is a huge issue.
  24. Tshooter

    Tshooter Hall of Fame

    Sep 12, 2007
    "Interesting that NYC had a hard time determining USTA revenue "

    There is no evidence the City had a hard time. I was making light of the disagreement between the two parties on the revenue number as it is defined under the lease agreement. The lease is a tangent. But I don't mind talking about it. The lease plays an important part in the anals of NYC political history. It was used and abused for political purposes by ex-Mayor Giuliani.

    -- Maybe Cincinnatti or IW money was an issue --

    No, for reasons you won't find surprising. The lease involves use of a city park. Rent is based on revenue derived from activities at the tennis site located at the park.

    " Anyway what kind of lease involves off-site revenue? "

    It doesn't from what I can infer of its terms from the audit report but I suppose it depends on what you mean by "off-site revenue." For example, the City took the position that revenue included the sponsor money generated by a broadcast of matches to a screen set up at Rockefeller Center. Is that "off-site" revenue to you ? Incidentally, given the lease provisions each cited I thought the City had the (much) stronger position.

    "The tennis magazine article may have had info that they don't want to attribute, so for now I think estimates of 8%-11%-14% will have to do."

    Remember when you mixed in O2 prize money instead of USO ? You're mixing again. Let's set aside that her methodoloy is flawed. It might make sense to guestimate revenue if the numbers didn't have to be provided to the IRS and made available to the public and if GAAP financials were't out there. She is talking about singles prize money.

    Our 11-14% range is based on total prize money , about $25 million prize money. If you look only at singles that number was about $19 M this year so let's call it $18 M since we're looking at either 2009 revenue (GAAP income statement) or 2010 revenue (USTA Form 990 w/o including NTC money) . That would be a range of depending on which revenue figure you use, $177 or $205, of 8.8%-10% (she may get 8.6% because she is using actual prize money not estimate of a prior year prize money like I did). So if you adjust total for singles, she is within the same range.

    The reason for a discrepency on the two forms and the resulting range would come down to differences in the rules for preparing the two documents and/or my lack of knowledge as to why they did or didn't carve out ticket revenue from the USTA 990 and stick it in the NTC 990. So that's my project. Because we shouldn't have a range. Unlike the city and the USTA we aren't negotiating what a lease term means. We are just taking numbers off a financial statement.

    "But the fairness of that is only one issue. Like Federer has been saying, the distribution of prize money, and making it possible for new players, is a huge issue."

    Yes, I agree. But I stick with my previous comment, I think it's involved. But speaking of fairness how about the money paid (or not) to refs, linespeople and volunteers.

    Here is your link to the audit report. Go crazy.


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