Bond markets in everything

by on September 12, 2011 at 1:00 am in Economics, Sports | Permalink

Wimbledon bonds:

But there is a backdoor onto Centre Court. About 2,500 seats are reserved for investors in the club’s so-called debentures, or bonds.

The club has issued these since the 1920s to finance development. But instead of paying cash coupons, like regular bonds, Wimbledon debentures pay interest in something much more valuable: tickets.

Holders get one ticket for each day of the Wimbledon tournaments during the five-year life of the bond. And here is the kicker: If you don’t feel like going on any given day, you can sell it—legally.

Such mini-bonds are a new trend in the UK, in part because the banking system is skittish about allocating credit to many small firms.

John Thacker September 12, 2011 at 1:38 am

Hmm, it seems like from the article that the club is leaving money on the table, if each issuance is over-subscribed and the tickets sell for so much more on the open market and have such high effective yields.

david September 12, 2011 at 2:52 am

But the untaken surplus gives the investors an incentive to fight for the popularity of Wimbledon, and their owners are likely to be influential.

Or maybe Wimbledon is just really, really risk-averse…

dearieme September 12, 2011 at 2:35 am
Alex Godofsky September 12, 2011 at 3:13 am

Seems like these bonds behave more like equity than debt.

Actually, it reminds me of this proposal from Steve Randy Waldman: http://www.interfluidity.com/v2/257.html

Ken Rhodes September 12, 2011 at 8:15 pm

Thanx for that excellent link, Alex. I especially liked the very long discussion that followed Steve Waldman’s original post. Lots of insights, alternatives, back-and-forth, and nary a harsh word.

One thing, though, kept nagging at the back of the mind. I think they made a show about Waldman’s idea — The Producers.

spencer September 12, 2011 at 10:53 am

I wonder who actually ends up using the seats– the money managers or their clients.

Glazier London September 17, 2011 at 6:23 pm

I would say the money managers.

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