Adderton/Brisbane Broncos/News Corp consortium
What we know
The NRL’s Brisbane Broncos are a late addition to the recently rebooted ‘Adderton’ consortium who’ve been actively negotiating a Supercars buyout since current owners Archer Capital announced plans to shed its 60% majority share from its portfolio.
It might sound like a strange leap for an NRL team, but not when you consider that the consortium—led by Boost Mobile founder Peter Adderton, Superbikes legend Mick Doohan and BTCC Chief Executive Alan Gow—is largely financed by the Bronco’s majority owner, News Corp. News Corp’s masthead sports channel is of course, Fox Sports, Supercars primary broadcaster— making the club’s involvement in the potential deal far less of a head scratcher.
There’s endless speculation about the inner workings of the Broncos involvement, with the club staying tight-lipped on what’s happening behind the scenes. What we do know is that the Adderton/News Corp/Brisbane Broncos bid makes for a powerhouse combination with enormous potential, for good or evil.
Adderton’s experience operating in the Australian market, combined with News Corp’s buying power and media leverage, and Doohan’s understanding of the culture that made the Supercars a juggernaut brand in the 80s and 90s could be exactly the type of leadership Supercars will thrive under.
While early rumours indicated that things weren’t looking great for the Adderton crew, News Corp’s financial backing seems to have nullified early bid knockbacks, with the consortium reportedly now in the due diligence stage of bidding.
What a Brisbane Broncos/News Corp buyout will mean for Supercars culture?
There’s a lot to unpack here. No one knows how dynamics within the Adderton consortium could play out, so one can only speculate who within the group would have the biggest influence on Supercars culture. It’s easy to see the smart marketing play in introducing Supercars to a large Brisbane Broncos fan base, but with the NRL constantly plagued by controversies and accusations of harbouring a culture of booze, brawls and misconduct, could a Brisbane Broncos involvement negatively impact Supercars culture and reputation?
On the other side of the coin, Mick Doohan’s Superbike legacy and expertise can surely only bring a positive contribution to the sport. Could he help to rebuild the hype and phenomena of V8 racing in the 80s and 90s?
And of course, love him or hate him, the influence of Rubert Murdoch’s News Corp on public exposure and sentiment is undeniable. If there’s one entity that can pull the right strings to get what they want, when they want it, News Corp has a track record of getting the deal done. What this could mean for positioning Supercars in the public arena is an exciting prospect. Could this be exactly what the doctor ordered? We may never know.
What are the chances?
Despite initial bid knock backs, the Adderton consortium has refused to drop out of the race. It’s this never-say-die attitude that we love to see in Supercars news. Plus, the inclusion of the Broncos on the bill is a huge indicator that the bidding is serious. We give their chances of a buckin’ bronco — 25%.