Every business big or small begins with a mission statement. It is the first part of any successful business plan, and the likelihood a business will succeed, is based on the strength and commitment to the mission statement. The business known as Società Sportiva Calcio Napoli S.p.A. states in their mission statement that Napoli is:
“now raising its sights to an international audience more suited to its size and geographical reach.” and “Napoli is also pressing ahead with plans to evolve into a diversified entertainment business”. Napoli’s mission statement further states that “From a corporate standpoint, its mission is to consolidate international partnerships by creating brand equity, that is, increasing the perceived value of the brand by promoting its notoriety, loyalty, and differentiation in the reference market.” the full mission statement can be read here .
The emphasis on promoting the brand is key to every decision Napoli make as an organization. The new kits are flying off the shelves and the comic presentation is targeting a younger demographic to lure into lifelong fans. A tactic used by many successful corporations.
While no one would argue that signing a Ronaldo or a Cavani wouldn’t be great for brand recognition, it is important to remember that all of these decisions must fit within the business’ financial means. The balance sheet is always the final decision maker in any well run business and Napoli is no exception. As a fan growing up and living in the USA, the idea of sports teams as individual businesses is foreign. Take the NFL as an example.
The NFL is the business and each team is a franchise within the greater business structure. So while each team has its own business structure, they all work within the NFL framework. There are salary and financial rules in place that keeps the league competitive and gives each franchise the same odds at success through salary caps and minimum spending limits.
This is not so in Serie A and other world football leagues. A football team that makes more money can spend more money and gain a financial edge over the competition. Napoli’s salary expenditures were a mere 50% of Juventus’ and is around a quarter of what some of the other top teams in Europe spent. Therefore, a team’s success cannot be solely judged by their place in the standings but rather their place in the standings relative to their financial positioning and in relation to the competition’s.
Napoli are clear winners in this department finishing a mere 4 points behind leaders Juventus and setting the record for the most points in a season without winning the Scudetto. The following chart demonstrates that Napoli and Lazio were the only two teams in the top six to score more points than millions of dollars spent.
It should be noted that after the top six, every team scored more points than millions dollars spent which further proves that championships are expensive! Atalanta did especially quite well picking up 60 points while only spending a mere 27 million. For a team to win and continue winning they have to be a business and a brand that brings in major sponsorship and attracts fans around the globe. This is Napoli’s mission statement and they inch closer to that goal with each passing season.
Recently, Arthur Blank, the successful owner of the NFL Atlanta Falcons and MLS Atlanta United franchises commented on what it takes to build a winning franchise as an owner.
- Be committed to winning.
- Over reach and bring in the best coach possible.
- Add high quality players that support the coach’s vision.
- Step back and let the system work itself.
Napoli’s owner and President Aurelio De Laurentiis has been committed to winning at Napoli. The financial statements are balanced and the club is operating within its means. The success under Sarri and the excitement of the fan base has created a desire to continue to see Napoli as a top European club.
Most recently De Laurentiis has over reached and hired the best coach possible in Carlo Ancelotti and announced the purchase of 100 hectares of land with which to build a new stadium, training ground and entertainment area. Now, Napoli fans need to show patience, let the club’s fan base and revenue grow, and the bigger player signings will follow. It all started with a strong mission statement by an unwavering and committed owner!