Once a year Forbes releases it’s rankings of MLS teams in terms of their market value. These rankings are of course based on 2015 numbers and the Sounders are leading the pack with a franchise value of $285 million. As for the Rapids, they come in ranking last with a value of $110 million and revenue of 16 million. The key number here being the 4 million dollar loss in operating income. (See page 2)
The next to last team just above the Rapids are the Columbus Crew, who are valued at $123 million, with a revenue for 2015 of $24 million and an operating loss of 2 million. The Rapids did not have the highest operating loss in the league in 2015. NYCFC and Toronto FC both had $9 million dollar operating losses, Chicago Fire ($6 million) and New York Red Bulls ($5 million) were next.
I suspect that these numbers would be worse for the Rapids if not for in part of the TransAmerica sponsorship. It is also my guess that the numbers overall for 2016 should look better with the additions of such higher profile players as Jermaine Jones and Tim Howard, although the operating costs may come in greater than the 4 million dollar loss for 2015.
When the list was released in 2013 (using 2012 financials) the Rapids were ranked 15th with a value of $76 million and $18 million in revenue, with the Quakes, Crew SC, DC United and Chivas USA falling below them. Operating income for the Rapids then was at a loss of $2.9 million. (2013 rankings)
The good news overall is that the league continues to grow.