AUSTIN (Austin Business Journal) — After years of work, hundreds of millions of dollars in construction, hundreds of hires, dozens of player and coach additions and countless hours of work, it’s just about here: kickoff for the first–ever Austin FC home match.
Ticket holders are counting down the days until the Major League Soccer club takes on the San Jose Earthquakes June 19 at Q2 Stadium. Sponsors that have put significant sums behind the club are eager for its glitzy debut under majority owner Anthony Precourt.
At the center of it all is Andy Loughnane, Austin FC president. Loughnane came over in January 2019 from another MLS team, the Columbus Crew, where he was president of business operations under Precourt. Loughnane has been involved in sports business for more than a decade, getting his start as an account executive with the Detroit Red Wings of the National Hockey League in 1996. After a stint in the corporate world, he returned to sports in 2012 as vice president of corporate partnerships for the Detroit Pistons of the National Basketball Association.
Now he’s steering the 27th MLS team toward its first match at Q2 Stadium, which will be at its full 100% capacity of roughly 20,500 seats. In just a couple of years, Austin FC has forged relationships with some of the biggest names in Central Texas business, from St. David’s HealthCare to Yeti Coolers. Loughnane said the club has more than 100 employees — a purposefully diverse group, with about 50% identifying as non-white — and will need “several hundred” part-time workers during events, from security to food service to housekeeping.
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