A five-year deal for a new concessionaire to take over food and beverage services at Chukchansi Park was approved Thursday morning by the Fresno City Council.
Professional Sports Catering was selected from a field of five companies that submitted proposals for a new concession contract at the city-owned ballpark that is home to the Triple-A Fresno Grizzlies. The company, which operates concessions at 28 other minor-league baseball ballparks and three spring training ballparks across the country, will invest about $500,000 for improvements to the concession facilities, including a new cashiering system for faster customer service and the installation of new digital menu boards.
“We are baseball owners, and we know owners want a good fan experience,” said Jason Wilson, PSC’s senior vice president of operations. “We work with the team and partner in every aspect, from quality products, value and the fan experience. … It’s not a concession operation, but really, a restaurant feel that we want to bring to the ballpark.”
The structure of the deal means the concession business belongs to the ballpark, with PSC hired to run the business in exchange for 8 percent of the net profit, in addition to a management fee equivalent to 4 percent of gross revenues if sales are under $3 million a year. Between the $500,000 in improvements to the concession facilities and the 92 percent profit share for the ballpark, the deal is expected to generate about $8.25 million over the five-year term based on attendance and sales projections.
Tom Dickson, the CEO of PSC, is owner of two minor-league baseball teams, the Lansing Lugnuts in Michigan and the Montgomery Biscuits in Alabama, and the catering company got its start as an in-house concession service for those two teams, Wilson said.