It’s getting harder to stay on top.
The world’s 50 most valuable sports teams are now worth a combined $256 billion (an average of $5.12 billion), 15% more than a year ago. And this year’s cutoff is higher than ever—$3.7 billion, or an increase of 19% from 2022.
The rise in valuations is primarily due to the higher multiples of revenue being paid for teams. The NFL’s Washington Commanders, ranked 12th on this year’s list of the top 50 teams, sold for a record $6.05 billion in July (or 11 times revenue). That’s quite an increase from the Denver Broncos (No. 21), whose sale price of $4.65 billion in 2022 was nine times revenue. Meanwhile, the NBA’s Phoenix Suns were purchased for $4 billion (13 times revenue) in February—the deal closed after our NBA valuations published last October—versus the $1.66 billion (six times revenue) the Utah Jazz changed hands for in 2020.
The action has also been revving up on the grid. The valuations of Formula 1 teams have risen a staggering 276% from four years ago, with the average multiple for the series’ ten teams up to 4.9, from 2.3 when Forbes last released valuations in 2019. Two F1 teams made this year’s top 50: Ferrari, ranked 45th and worth $3.9 billion, and Mercedes, ranked 47th at $3.8 billion. This marks the first time since 2013 that F1 teams have cracked the top 50 (when Ferrari was No. 21 and McLaren was 47th). The rise of those F1 teams bumped the NBA’s Brooklyn Nets and English soccer team Chelsea—who were ranked 48th and 50th, respectively, last year—from 2023’s top 50.
The NFL remains the most valuable sports league in the world thanks to guaranteed television deals that could be worth more than $126 billion by 2033. Professional football has 30 teams among the top 50, the same number as last year.
But the NFL is not the fastest-growing sport in terms of value. Among this year’s top 50, the seven soccer teams have the highest average five-year change (114%), led by Paris Saint-Germain. The French squad is up 334% since 2018 and is now worth $4.2 billion, ranking No. 36 this year. Also boosting their values are two teams in the English Premier League, Liverpool (with a 173% increase) and Manchester City (up 102%). During the past five years, all three teams regularly finished in the top third of their respective domestic leagues, and they typically participate in the lucrative Champions League.
No NHL, MLS or Indian Premier League teams made the top 50 this year. The New York Rangers, worth $2.2 billion, are the most valuable hockey team, and the Mumbai Indians, worth $1.3 billon, are the most valuable cricket team. In MLS, the Los Angeles Football Club is the most valuable team, becoming the first American soccer franchise to eclipse $1 billion.
The 50 Most Valuable Teams are culled from Forbes’ Formula 1, IPL, MLB, NBA, NFL, NHL and soccer team valuations during the past 12 months. Our team values are enterprise values (equity plus net debt) and include the economics of each team’s stadium as well as the rights fees they get from their regional sports networks. But the valuations exclude a team’s equity stakes in other sports-related assets (such as RSNs), other sports leagues and mixed-use real estate projects. For appraisals that include all sports-related assets, see Forbes’ annual ranking of the most valuable sports empires.