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Not Losing Money on NABCs

The key to not losing money and at the same time not driving away players is price discrimination: Extract more money from the people who will come even if they pay more, so that you don't have to have prices that drive away everyone else.  In the past people have suggested a professionals tax.  I think we can accomplish largely the same thing without identifying professionals.

Here's a possible structure.  Someone at the ACBL could calculate exactly what it would do to their revenue and adjust accordingly.  The structure has three components:

PERFORMANCE

We make money based on high performers.  They are either hiring pros, are pros, or obviously care so much about bridge that they will be willing to pay more.  The most expensive of the following applies:

Double entry fees in NABC+ events for anyone whose seeding points are at least one quarter of what would have qualified for the 17-32 seed groups in the previous Spingold

Triple entry fees in NABC+ events and double entry fees in other events for anyone whose seeding points are at least one quarter of what would have qualified for the 9-16 seed groups in the previous Spingold

Quadruple entry fees in NABC+ events and double entry fees in other events for anyone whose seeding points are at least one quarter of what would have qualified for the 2-8 seed groups in the previous Spingold

GEOGRAPHY

We also impose a 25% surcharge on players not from North America (US, Mexico, Canada, Bermuda).  For one thing, their travel costs are generally higher, so they will be willing to pay more.  

For similar reason we offer a 50% discount to anyone living within 60 miles of the playing site.  (Their entry fees will be a much high portion of their total cost of particiation, so they will be more price-sensitive.)

AGE

We need to encourage young people to participate, and they often are less able to afford high entry fees.  (Also, they tend to economize on food and hotel, so entry fees represent a higher portion of their total cost, making them more price sensitive.)

50% discount to anyone between the ages of 26 and 35.

75% discount for anyone under 26.

All three components get multiplied together, so for example a 24-year-old from Germany who has enough seeding points to seed 17-32 on a team of people just like him would pay 2.0 x 1.25 x 0.25 = 62.5% of the base entry fee for an NABC+ event and 1.00 x 1.25 x 0.25 = 31.25% of the base entry fee for a side game (regional event).

Added note: There are a lots of complaints about this raising the entry fees and that not being necessary.  First of all, this wouldn't results in a surcharge for the vast majority of attendees--those who are from North America and wouldn't seed in the top 32 of the Spingold.  It would result in a big discount for youth.  And if the NABCs are in sound shape financially, but the entry fees are currently perceived as too high, this could allow the base entry fee to be reduced, thus alleviating the expense concerns of the vast majority of attendees.

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