Show me the money

After skeptical reader TD wrote in to question another of other readers’ suggestions that the NQC owner-board members make a decent wad of cash each year off the gathering in Louisville, JG writes to make the case for the cash:

Conservatively, NQC fills what, 75,000-100,000 seats during the week of NQC? Six nights @ 13,000-17,000 per night? At $20 per ticket (again, a conservative number) that’s a gross of $1.5-$2.0 MILLION for the week. And that doesn’t even include all the showcases! Even if their overhead totals 70%, they come out with a profit of almost half a million. That’s on the conservative side and, again, doesn’t include all the showcases. Split that ten ways and you’re looking at $50,000 each. That’s on the low end. My guess is the overhead is even less than 70%, maybe closer to 50%. Some of the groups appearing are paid $500 per appearance, other may get up to $1,500. NQC is a HUGE money maker.

This continues to sound persuasive to me (though again I have to stress that being persuaded by something doesn’t always make it so). I ran some quick figures on the back of an envelope this afternoon and came up with something similar to JG. But then I never did well at math, mostly because there was only one right answer and I never seemed to get it. No matter, the fact is that ticket sales generate a lot of revenue. There is big money circulating around NQC. The unknown, of course, is overhead. Until I see any reason to think that NQC’s operating expenses disproportionately exceed other businesses operations, I’ll probably continue to be persuaded by the More Money thesis.

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