Stories to fuel your mind

Amar Doman

A New Breed of Owner

Share the story

Story by Joe Leary

Photos by Jacob Coutur

There are all types of personalities among owners of major league franchises in professional sports. Some are highly visible, flamboyant; some are controversial and outspoken; while others are aloof and rarely seen or heard

I love football and have always loved the BC Lions

With the press, they can be evasive, dismissive and even downright combative. Amar Doman is neither of these.

You’d be hard-pressed to find anything other than praise for the owner of the BC Lions Football Club. Already a business titan and founder of one of Canada’s largest and fastest-growing companies, Futura Corporation, Doman purchased the BC Lions in 2021.


Now, in just his second year at the helm, he has clearly illustrated that his passion for the club is sincere and his support for the CFL is unwavering. It’s something you dream about since you’re a child, really, he says of his desire to purchase the team. I love football and have always loved the BC Lions.

I grew up on the Island so there wasn’t a lot of opportunity to get over to Vancouver for games but when we did it was special.

I always thought in the back of my mind if there was ever an opportunity for me to get this done, it would be fantastic.


That opportunity was sealed when he purchased the team from the estate of previous owner David Braley. Braley, who owned the BC Lions from 1997 until his death in 2020, was passionate about the CFL, and made it clear that he wanted the team to remain in the hands of dedicated local partners.

Doman certainly ticks that box and stresses that’s one of the keys to success

Sponsored Ads

He is humble, loves to do media and get his message across and the fans recognize that— and that’s important.

I think local ownership really matters in the CFL, he says.

We’re talking about a league with some smaller cities in a smaller country, so really working through the community is important —that’s Number One.

Number Two: investing in the club and making it exciting for youth, and really re-growing that young fan base again— which we’re doing.

And given the myriad ownership groups in professional sports, Amar Doman also brings a refreshingly new and accessible style of ownership to the sports world.

Broadcaster Rick Dhaliwal, co-host of CHEKTV’s popular sports talk show “Donnie and Dhali,” has a longstanding affi liation with not only the BC Lions but the CFL as well. He asserts the Lions have the ideal owner in Doman.

Amar has all the qualities to be a successful owner, says Dhaliwal. First off , he loves football and the CFL; and he did not buy the BC Lions for the wrong reasons.

The late David Braley would always tell me, ‘I will not sell to someone who does not love the CFL.’ And boy, did he fi nd the right owner.

Amar also does not display the massive ego most owners have. He is humble, loves to do media and get his message across and the fans recognize that— and that’s important. Dhaliwal also notes that Amar Doman has made it his mission to bring excitement back, not just to the game but to the game day presentation.

He has also stepped up and put his money where his mouth is. All the activities around the game day experience he has invested in will pay off .

To that end, Doman has brought in high-level performers for consecutive BC Lions season home openers: One Republic headlined in 2022, and that was followed with rapper LL Cool J in 2023. It’s a policy he maintains will greet each new season.

Absolutely, he says emphatically, of headline acts kicking off the season home openers at BC Place. I cannot wait to do this year after year, no matter whether we’re having a good season or a tough one. We’re going to throw the biggest concert home opener kick-off every single year.

Doman’s distinctive new style and approach has been replenishing a diminished fan base that tailed off in recent years. And Dhaliwal feels certain that Amar Doman can serve as the blueprint for CFL ownership going forward.

Nothing has changed overnight, but certainly the rest of the owners have taken notice of the Lions’ improved TV numbers and attendance, says Dhaliwal.

Especially in Toronto and Montreal, two cities that had the same problems as the BC Lions before Doman took over.

Sponsored Ads

Related Articles