MSG Sphere reports $98 Million Loss, High Demand for Sports Signage, and more!


With only one month left to conclude the final quarter of 2023, take a look at the exciting news from November! US sport venues saw a significant demand for advertising via signage. We also got a bit of an insight into the future of e-paper. By now with some time in operation, the MSG Sphere reports its surprising financial status. Lastly, NASA set up an exciting 3D billboard just outside the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Let’s dive right in!

US sport venues see BIG demand for ad signage

SponsorUnited is a company specializing in sports and entertainment intelligence. Their data gives an insight into the sports section of the DOOH industry. Namely, they claim that in the past five years, there has been a massive influx of advertisers buying stadium signage. Their CEO, Bob Lynch, posted on LinkedIn the following valuable insight.

  • Total brands buying stadium signage has jumped 33%.
  • Total unique ad placements have increased 61%.
  • Average number of signs bought per brand is up 21%.
  • Stadiums went from an average of 30.3 to 38.2 brands getting exposure.
  • Alcohol, Finance, and Auto are the top 3 categories in that order. (5 years ago, Auto was #1).

Bob noted a few factors which are the likely catalysts for this growth. Increased competition in a cluttered ad environment is an important one. Advances in data analytics are allowing brands to make better decisions, leading to more accurate placements of ads. There is, of course, also the factor of general sponsorship growth. League sponsorship revenues grew significantly this year, driving more brands into the ecosystem.

NASA’s 3D billboard!

Earlier this month, NASA revealed an exciting visual gem outside of the Kennedy Space Center. Their 3D billboard captured the rich history of space exploration, as well as its exciting future! In total, the 3D billboard features over six minutes of content, showing visuals from past Apollo missions to the latest Artemis program. 

The display reaches 30 feet in height and consists of 6.1 million pixels. It was created by multimedia tech and design studio, Blunt Action. One of its co-founders, Ethan Jakab, said that “this project wasn’t just about creating an animation; it was about breathing life into history, crafting an immersive portal to the stars, and presenting it to the public.”

MSG Sphere reports $98.4 million loss

2023 was undoubtedly marked as the year of the MSG Sphere launch. Everyone, in particular the social media world, was talking about it months before, and even more so after its release in September. The locale itself cost $2.3 billion to construct from the ground up and has been consistently successful at catching attention and selling out concerts. However, despite its success, the MSG Sphere is reportedly facing a $98.4 million operating loss for the first fiscal quarter of 2024. This primarily reflects higher depreciation and amortization, and direct operating expenses, among others.

MSG Sphere

Additionally, the company reportedly lost its chief financial officer, Gautam Ranji. However, according to a public statement, this wasn’t caused by any disagreement with the company’s independent auditors.

The Sphere has from the start been a big investment and a project which appears to be gradually growing over time. This is evident by the fact that many advertisers are waiting in line for their moment on the Exosphere. 11 additional U2 concerts have been added for January and February 2024. To date, every U2 show has been sold-out. Executive Chairman and CEO James L. Dolan stated: “We are building positive momentum across Sphere and remain confident that we are well positioned to drive long-term value for shareholders.”

The future of E-paper

Outdoor e-paper displays find an excellent application at transit stops. In terms of durability of their battery life, tech companies are consistently pushing the limits. Papercast, a leading innovator in sustainable e-paper solutions, recently launched an e-paper product range which claims to have a battery life of over 3 years. 

Sometimes solar arrays are attached to these devices to provide additional power at night. However, with a battery life this durable, there is no need. As these setups don’t have to be attached to an external power supply, they can be placed more freely. 

A very long battery life will very likely become the norm in the future of e-paper. The Swedish company Axentia, for instance, claims that their iBus E-paper displays can also operate for 3 years on a single battery change and have no need for continuous maintenance. 

Digital signage at trade shows

This month on the OnSign TV blog, one of the more notable articles we posted was on the topic of using digital signage to enhance your trade show experience. Trade shows are an exceptional environment, but they can also be quite stressful for exhibitors. With a big crowd, tons of foot traffic, and plenty to see at every corner, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. This is also the case for visitors. With appropriate use of digital displays, you can help them and yourself!

Use digital signage to welcome visitors to your booth, showcase highlights of your products or services, offer interactive product demos, and provide on-demand information. You may even load up a map of the trade show, helping visitors remember your location and navigate the space more easily.