Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Screaming Headline

On Equidaily.com today Andy Beyer's recent column is in huge Drudge-like letters "The Racing Industry is About to Learn Some Hard Economic Lessons."

In the article he explores the dysfunctionality of racing in raising their prices while bettors are leaving.

Imagine the following discussion in the executive suite of a modern-day corporation.

Executive 1: "The economy is killing us. Customers are deserting us. Our business is terrible. What are we going to do?"

Executive 2: "I've got an idea. Let's raise our prices!"

Executive 1: "Raise prices! Brilliant!"

Surely no business - not even the Detroit auto industry - would be foolish enough to do this when the country is plunging into a deep recession. But there is one industry that believes raising prices makes economic sense.


Handle will be down again in 2009. And it will be in large part self inflicted.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

While this article by Ray Paulick is not about raising takeout it is another indicator of were we are headed. Go to today's Paulick Report and read the article titled Fools Gold. It is scary but forthright about our future.
Regards, Rebecca

Scott Ferguson said...

The people in charge think they are a monopoly so they can do what they like. They are a monopoly on a small scale (racing in their local area), but face intense competition for the leisure and entertainment dollar. And until they recognise that, they will continue to flounder.

Do everything possible to bring new people into racing. Syndicated ownership, free entry, family days, concerts after racing ends, theme days for local industries (construction, trades, nurses etc) - anything to get new people through the gates. Never been to racing in the US (but have in many other countries), so not sure how much of this has been tried already, but if the age demographic is like most tracks (40+), then they need to fix it..

Anonymous said...

I can only speak on the economics of the Detroit area. I have a stack of e-mails and coupons for restaurants, buy one and get one free. These are good restaurants, not the best but excellent food and when we go in we find a majority of the people appear to be retirees. A retiree with Soc Sec and a pension or retirement fund probably has an income of maybe 40-50k. Homes are paid for and health care costs maybe $300/mo. I think the area has an unemployment rate of over 10% and the auto companies will be adding to it. If I ran Pinnacle, Thistle Downs, Windsor Raceway or any other hard hit area racetrack I would be bending over backwards to attract retirees. Tampa Bay is in the heart of retirement country and I think they are doing just fine. Take care of the present if possible in these times.
RG