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Phillies CFO: Club Always Aware of Affordability


John Nickolas
John Nickolas

John Nickolas, vice president and chief financial officer for the Philadelphia Phillies, told a group of 50-60 students and faculty that the organization always keeps an eye on “the broad-based affordability of the sport.” He described ticket prices as ranging from $18 (standing room) to $70 and noted that 2014 will be the third consecutive season at these prices.


Nickolas spoke to Sport and Entertainment Management classes about The Business of Baseball on November 18 in the Bayada Atrium. He said that Major League Baseball is a $7.5 billion industry and that the primary source of revenue is ticket sales. The 30 clubs sold approximately 74 million tickets in 2013.


The Phillies topped the 3 million mark in ticket sales in 2013, but that number is a significant decline from the 3.65 million tickets sold in 2012. He also pointed out the importance of the baseball team to the local economy, noting the amusement tax, payroll tax, sales tax and others that support local and federal governments.


Nickolas joined the Phillies organization in July 2003 and was named vice president, chief financial officer in 2007. He was joined by John Festick, senior staff account for the Phillies and a 2005 graduate of Neumann University. Festick’s internship with the Phillies led to his job with the organization.


A 1985 graduate of Archbishop Ryan High School in Northeast Philadelphia, Nickolas graduated summa cum laude with a BS degree in accounting from West Chester University in 1990.  He is a member of West Chester University’s Business School Advisory Council and a trustee of the university’s foundation.  He has been a guest speaker at various organizations and universities in the Philadelphia area.


Prior to joining the Phillies, Nickolas served in a variety of financial and operational roles for Internet Capital Group, Inc., Safeguard Scientifics, Inc. and KPMG LLP.  He is a member of the American and Pennsylvania Institutes of Certified Public Accountants.


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