When the enigmatic Stan Kroenke assumed full ownership of the then-St. Louis Rams back in 2010, he did so with the vision of taking the franchise in the upper-echelon of NFL popularity, which all began with the relocation back to Los Angeles.
Despite being from Missouri, the businessman in Kroenke saw the limitless opportunities in Los Angeles to take his brand global — something his home state simply could not give him. Kroenke discussed those opportunities recently at the Variety-Sports Illustrated Entertainment Summit in Los Angeles, where he was joined by Chief Operating Officer Kevin Demoff and head coach Jeff Fisher to discuss the relocation this year:
“Well, I mean, I think you know, Los Angeles is so important for the NFL. Because some people call it the gateway to South America. Some people certainly call it the gateway to Asia, but it’s extremely important if growth is going to occur like most people see it occurring in the coming years. Yeah, I think L.A. is extremely important that way.”
The Rams have already gotten to work on their global expansion with games in London over the next two years and most recently scheduling to play against the San Francisco 49ers in China in 2018. Demoff expanded on this idea, stating that the Rams and Hollywood go hand-in-hand:
“I look at our franchise now as a content production company. We do 16 Sundays a year. We do the draft. We do the offseason. We do training camp. We produce a lot of games and I think our games are just an extension of that. They’re the most visible portion of our content, but I think it’s starting to seamlessly blend together.”
While the Rams are truly marketable with young stars like Todd Gurley and Aaron Donald, they will first need to give fans around the world something to cheer about, which is a winning team. However, it is something they have not yet achieved since under the ownership of Kroenke.