Bali United FC: Bali’s Pride Team Going Public Football Club in Indonesia

Who says Bali is all about beach, clubs, rice field, waterfall, mountains, coffee shops, or even temples? There is one more thing that you have to know and you should write it down on your travel-to-Bali-bucket-list, that is watching football match!

In Spain, you have Real Madrid FC, in Germany you have Bayern Munich FC, in UK you have Manchester Unite, and for those of you who don’t know, Bali has their own favourite team; Bali United FC! Having their home base in Gianyar, feel the atmosphere of chanting the team anthem in a big stadium, should be a new experience for you.

A brief history of Bali United, long before, it was named Putra Samarinda FC, a legendary football team based in East Borneo. Having difficulty in their internal financial management, the management met a great businessman named Yabes Tanuri, who lived in Bali. He then noticed this opportunity, and bought the license and moved their home base to Bali. After getting their own stadium, Captain I Wayan Dipta Stadium in 2015, the team name has finally changed to Bali United.

Although it was only born in 2015, this team has quite a lot of supporters, due to the sense of belonging of the Balinese people for their local team’s achievements. Bali United truly understands how to live in the current era of modern football. In addition to getting income from sponsors and match tickets at home games, Bali United also maximizes the income of its supporters by selling official teams of merchandise.

Like many other teams in Europe that have official stores selling original merchandise, which will surely make an income for the team, Bali United also has it; Bali United Store, which is the mainstay of Bali United to get more revenue. Bali United Store provides official merchandise such as original jersey, jackets, and many other accessories like hat, scarf, or hand-band.

With Bali United Store, the supporters could easily buy the original merchandise, so that they won’t buy the fake ones. Supporters who used to buy fake merchandise have gradually changed their habits to buy official items. For the fans who lives outside Bali, they can also get it online. Being a supporter who obediently buys official items from a team will bring supporters closer and have a greater sense of ownership for the team. In addition to increasing revenue for the team, things like this are also done to increase the popularity.

Moreover, to increase the popularity, Bali United really took the advantage of this modern era by maximizing the entertainment side of football. Through Bali United TV channel in YouTube, Bali United tried to bring the team and its players closer to supporters throughout Indonesia. The Bali United TV channel is made like a European football team channel. Starting from the preparation of the teams, Interviews featuring new players are also presented on this channel. Supporters can immediately get acquainted with the new players who will defend the team’s pride. Many activities of players outside the match are also shown in the channel. Bali United really knows how to increase their popularity.

On the financial side, the development is still continuing. Managed by Bali Bintang Sejahtera Enterprise, they officially made an Initial Public Offering (IPO) or initial public offering of shares on the Indonesia Stock Exchange (IDX) on Monday, June 17, 2019. Bali United became the 14th listed company in Indonesia and 63rd on the IDX. The IPO is the company’s suggestion for raising funds from the public. There are many benefits, in the business world, it is seen as a more professional and accountable act.

Luckily, the public was enthusiastic. This can be illustrated through the stock price which immediately jumped from IDR 175 per share on the IPO to IDR 296 per share. The transaction value generated IDR 38.33 million on the first day. A price-increase of 69.14% made Bali United hit by an auto reject (upper limit). As stipulated in the BEI Directors’ Decree Kep-00096 / BEI / 08-2015 (PDF), the maximum limit of up and down on the initial listing is 70% for the share price of IDR 50-200, 50% for IDR 200-500, and 40% for IDR 500. This is applied to make the fluctuations of stocks price are more maintained.

The CEO of Bali United, Pieter Tanuri was touched and proud to know that there are ordinary people who buy even though only 1 lot of shares. There are lecturers, there are office boys, teachers and even small children who break piggy banks to buy it. It’s funny, considering that initially Bali United was often underestimated by the majority of Indonesian football fans because of being accused of being a “fake club”, due to their history, which comes originally from Borneo, not in Bali.

In fact, Bali United is more powerful than the elders like Persija Jakarta, Persib Bandung, and Persipura Jayapura, who have dozens (in fact there have been hundreds of years) to build a dynastic relationship. At least, for the professionalism of the club. This is a historical step because Bali United is the first Southeast Asian team (second in Asia, after Guangzhou Evergrande) to go public.

Sports is indeed a unique business. Now, it is not only a competition which aims to find a winner. But the team performance on the pitch also influence the selling value on the trading floor. Even so, many European football clubs in the stock market explains the value of a club’s stock becomes very uncertain if their business model is too dependent on the outcome of the match.

Football in modern times is not just a 2×45 minute match on the pitch. Football has gone from being just a sport to get pleasure and achievement, to being a sport for profit. The development of football into the modern era has also made the magnitude of the velocity of money that occurs in this sport. Investors who have abundant funds have begun to spend their money into football, not only in Europe, Asia is now also starting to feel the flow of investors’ funds, especially in China.

China is the country in Asia with the most lavish soccer league. Large financial support from entrepreneurs, who seemed to have lots of money, successfully landed European star players. Not only players who are ready to end their careers, but also star players who are still in their golden age. The lure of exorbitant salaries succeeded in making the Chinese Super League teams able to present world class players like Carlos Tevez and Oscar. A tantalizing offer by the Chinese team managed to make Carlos Tevez lick his own spit. That is a proof that Asian football has become one of the profitable sectors to invest.

Not only China, Indonesian football is also in the developing stage. It is not as fancy and glamorous as China, but its development has progressed quite well since the release of FIFA sanctions on 13 May 2016 yesterday. The velocity of money began to occur in Indonesian football, together with investors began to look at Indonesian football as one of the productive investment fields.

The “Indonesia Soccer Championship” tournament became one of the real examples, which some investors have begun to dare to spend their money in football, the most favourite sport in Indonesia. Plus, now with the new management at PSSI (the Indonesia’s Official Football Organization), there seems to be a bright light for Indonesian football moving towards a more modern and professional one.

Like Bali United, now they are making their own history. The history of Bali United was built with professional management in accordance with the rules of modern football. So, it is unlikely that there will be a player whose salary is not paid for months. It was built from proper management, so as to create a conducive dressing room atmosphere and a strong team atmosphere. That way, players could play with all their heart. Because they play not only for money, but also a motivation to develop themselves professionally. Motivation that arises from within, not only because of money.

The history of Bali United is being carved through the sportsmanship of its supporters, so that there will be no more riots in the name of narrow fanaticism. Semeton Dewata, which is Bali United’s fan nickname, has built history by making the Captain I Wayan Dipta Stadium as the friendliest stadium for other supporters. All supporters are comfortable to visit. Bali United has given pride to the Balinese people. They succeed to captured the hearts of the Balinese people.

By empowering young children to enter the academy that was created, Bali United has brought pride in being the top club in the national competition U-19.

By empowering local players, Bali United is now proud of being entrenched at the top of Indonesian League 1.

By empowering young players to enter the academy with proper and continuous coaching, Bali United has built their pride.

By this fascinating development, it is hard to imagine the supporters does not support Bali United in every condition. Whether it is win or lose.

Yes, up until now, Bali United is seen as great football club in Indonesia. They play beautiful, together with its sportsmanship, with its modern management, with its supporters who are friendly to all supporters. The hearts of the Balinese people have been merged into the spirit this club. Bali United is Bali, Bali is Bali United.

So, if you’re visiting Bali, if it is possible and have the chance to hear the match coming, make sure to check out them!