Aaron Flaker is co-owner and chief business development officer of Athletx Sports Group. As a 2018 Connect Sports Game Changer, he discusses his passion for sports tourism.
How I Got Here: I am the co-founder and former co-owner of The JAM Brands (a cheer and dance event company) as well as ZOOperstars (a national traveling entertainment company). In 2016, I bought into Athletx and co-founded a new parent company, Athletx Sports Group, a baseball and softball event and media company. Since then, I have helped lead the addition of two new brands: Game Day USA and Baseball Youth.
Why I Am a Game Changer: At The JAM Brands, we produced approximately 150 events across the country annually. I co-led the charge on mergers and acquisitions, leading to the addition of approximately eight companies to The JAM Brands family. I worked with CVBs and sports commissions from across the U.S. to secure venues and produce JAM events that resulted in more than 150,000 participants and 250,000 spectators annually. Athletx organizes more than 260 events annually, attracting nearly 100,000 players, 10,000 coaches and 275,000 spectators.
Impressive Stats: The JAM Brands/JAMfest grew from a $600 startup when I was 23 years old to the second-largest cheer and dance event company in the world, grossing more than $20 million annually.
What I am Working on Now: I am excited about what our team is building now at Athletx Sports Group. The company has grown by nearly 200 percent in revenue and our staff has over tripled in size since I joined the company in 2016;. I am looking forward to continuing to grow our brand both organically and through additional mergers and acquisitions in the future.
What I Do Outside of Work: I coach a nationally ranked 11U travel baseball team and serve as director of the nonprofit Louisville STING travel baseball program with more than 120 players and 11 teams. I am also an avid University of Louisville fan and was a board member of the University of Louisville Alumni Association for many years.