LOS ANGELES CHARGERS: A Case Study
Surina Sud, Richard Li, Kieran Knott, Daifeng (Leo) Lin, Peyton Luxford BSBA in Marketing, Management, Business Analytics, Finance, Interaction Design, Mathematics, UX Design

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Title:                           Los Angeles Chargers: A Case Study

Subject Area:          Competitive strategy

Region:                    United States

Industry:                 National Football League

Company:                 The Chargers

Challenge:                The Los Angeles Chargers are a part of the strong allegiance of the National Football League.  The Chargers called San Diego their home until the 2017 season, when it was somewhat abruptly announced that the team was to move to Los Angeles and eventually share a stadium (to be completed in 2020) with the L.A. Rams.  In the interim, the Chargers have been playing in a soccer stadium which has significantly decreased profits and otherwise damaged the spirits of an already disheartened fanbase. The team had to recalibrate its positioning challenge, specifically related to new market entry, and elucidate a strategy that could effectively connect the Chargers with its new community.

 

Personal Capital: Elucidating Our Professional Core

Our strategy team consists of the following members:

  • Surina Sud (BSBA) – Marketing / Business Analytics
  • Richard Li (BSBA) – Management
  • Leo Lin (BSBA) – Finance / Interaction Design
  • Kieran Knott (BSBA) – Mathematics / Finance
  • Peyton Luxford (BSBA) – Finance / UX Design

Through the team’s current capabilities and passion for the Chargers, this project provided the team with the opportunity to act as consultants for our client. The team was eager to apply the concepts learned in class while working on a real-life business problem. Additionally, this project allowed the team to explore business strategy in a setting of interest and created exposure for team members to gauge potential career paths.

 

Social Capital: Embedding in the Context of the Organization and Industry

The majority of our data came from secondary research. For concrete figures and other relevant information, we relied on publicly available data. For financial information we used Statsica. Since the NFL is not a public traded company, we could not analyze financial statements within a 10-K report. We also utilized the Charger’s website and social media platforms in order to gain a better perspective on the company as a whole. Through conversations with Chargers’ stakeholders, we were able to acquire a different perspective on the issue as well as gain insights into the Charger’s efforts to immerse itself into the L.A. community.

 

After gathering all our data, we then created a SWOT to help formulate a strategy to help the Chargers. Within this SWOT we will highlight factors of Porter’s 5 forces, PESTEL, and VRIO to give us a deeper dive into the internal and external environment.  In addition to this, we used a Blue Ocean strategy to analyze the strengths and weaknesses of the Chargers compared to the competition of the Rams.

 

Professional Capital: Analyzing and Solving the Challenge

 

A deep analysis of the situation has been conducted in order to identify opportunities the Chargers can act upon in order to revitalize their fanbase and secure their spot in the LA community, with a particular emphasis on the competitive advantage the Chargers can cultivate in order to differentiate themselves in a crowded sports market. The team has strong resources, capabilities and operations in order to create a strong presence in the city, but is struggling to solidify a concrete, differentiated and authentic strategy.  In this report, we will make recommendations based on strength-opportunity based solutions presented in the SWOT analysis. The goal is to generate a business strategy that could utilize a strong media presence to create an emotional connection with young or new potential fans.

Key Findings

  • Chargers have a large social media following compared to other NFL teams, and a strong foundation for video and other multi-media content – will play a vital role in a successful outreach strategy
  • Diversity and relative youth in population Los Angeles are specific outreach opportunities and will guide the Chargers’ strategy

 

Analyses

  • SWOT → Identified strength-opportunity matches for the team
  • PESTEL → Captured a well-rounded idea of how the L.A. Sports Market currently operates
  • Strategy Canvas → Allowed us to identify strengths and weaknesses of both the Chargers and Rams to create opportunities for the Chargers to act upon to further immerse itself in the L.A. community

 

Solutions, Measures & Implementation

  • Tracking the number of listeners and viewers for a wide variety of media like podcasts, video, and social media (Instagram, Facebook, etc.), number of attendees who showed up to the Chargers’ community events, and the number of young fans and Latinos in Southern California that self-identify as Chargers fans
  • Changing LA Chargers current organizational structure to allow more freedom in lower-level decision making

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