Posts Tagged ‘Team Sale’

The Carolina Hurricanes are on the verge of being sold.

Current owner Peter Karmanos Jr. met with Dallas billionaire Tom Dundon on Thursday, and the pair later appeared at the NHL’s Board of Governors meeting in Florida.

A purchase agreement is in place and is expected to be announced later Thursday, according to TSN’s Darren Dreger and Pierre LeBrun.

Karmanos Jr. will not be stepping aside immediately, however.

All indications are Dundon will help stabilize the team’s presence in North Carolina.

“(Karmanos Jr.) had said (all) along: he’s put a lot of money into this marketplace, he believes in this marketplace, the NHL believes in this marketplace,” team president Don Waddell said on Nov. 29, according to Cory Lavalette of North State Journal. “Any potential buyer is not going to have that option. They know if they’re buying the team, they’re buying it to keep it in Raleigh, North Carolina.”

Reports of discussions between Karmanos and Dundon emerged in late November.

Back in July, a purchase offer of around $500 million was submitted by Chuck Greenberg – a former co-owner of the Texas Rangers – but Karmanos later said he felt Greenberg couldn’t afford to make the right deal.

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The owners of Canada’s lone Major League Baseball team might be considering cashing out.

According to Natalie Wong of Bloomberg, Rogers Communications chief financial officer Tony Staffieri said during a conference in New York this week that the Canadian company is evaluating a possible sale of various assets – including the Toronto Blue Jays.

Staffieri said a potential sale could allow Rogers to gain more value from its portfolio of assets, while also allowing the company to pursue other investment opportunities, according to Wong. Staffieri added that a potential sale of the Blue Jays is not close.

Rogers Communications bought the Blue Jays from Belgian brewing conglomerate Interbrew SA for $165 million in September 2000, under the direction of the corporation’s then-president Ted Rogers. Forbes valued the Blue Jays at $1.3 billion this past April, placing them as the 16th-most valuable franchise in MLB.

Despite finishing 10 games below .500 in 2017, the Blue Jays drew an American League-leading 3,203,886 fans to Rogers Centre.

Minority shareholders of the Memphis Grizzlies have triggered a buy-sell clause that will force controlling owner Robert Pera into making a firm decision on the franchise, sources told Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic.

Pera can either buy out the minority owners at the evaluation they set for the franchise, or sell his shares at that same evaluation and relinquish control, according to a report from Zach Lowe and Brian Windhorst of ESPN in 2016.

The clause was triggered by Grizzlies minority owners Steve Kaplan and Daniel Straus, who each hold a 14 percent stake in the team.

Estimates from 2012 suggest Pera only owns 25.6 percent, of which he purchased for $45 million. That was good enough for Pera to serve as controlling owner, although he requires participation from the other owners to reach a majority vote.

The clause was built when Pera and a group of 20 minority owners assumed control of the franchise. Pera had initially intended to buy the team on his own, but his technology company dipped in value at the time, which forced Pera to take on additional buyers.

Krawczynski reports Pera’s company has since skyrocketed in value, but his absent presence around the franchise could signal a split.

Kaplan wanted $100 million when he tried to sell in 2016, according to Lowe and Windhorst, which would value the Grizzlies at $700 million. It’s unclear if the price has changed, or if Pera is willing to meet it.

Carolina Hurricanes president Don Waddell confirmed that Dallas billionaire Thomas Dundon is in the midst of discussions to purchase the franchise, according to Sportsnet’s John Shannon.

While nothing is set in stone, a potential deal would see Dundon given controlling interest of the Hurricanes, according to Shannon.

The news is just the latest in what has become an ongoing saga regarding the sale of the Carolina franchise. Back in July, owner Peter Karmanos Jr. received an offer to buy the franchise from Chuck Greenberg – co-owner of the Texas Rangers – for approximately $500 million.

However, last month Karmanos said he felt Greenberg couldn’t afford to purchase the team.

Back in August it was reported there were up to 12 groups interested in purchasing the team and the news of Dundon’s discussions doesn’t appear to have dampened that figure. As Shannon notes, the team appears to be having discussions with other potential buyers as well.

Karmanos has owned the franchise since 1994 when he purchased the then-Hartford Whalers and eventually relocated the team to Raleigh.

The Ottawa Senators are not for sale.

Team president Tom Anselmi made that clear Thursday, denying speculation the club could soon see a change in ownership.

“There’s nothing to it and I just have no idea where it’s from,” Anselmi told Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Citizen. “We’re in the sports business and rumors happen, but there’s nothing to it. I don’t even want to respond to it to give any credence.”

Since 2003, the Senators have been solely owned by Eugene Melnyk, a Canadian billionaire whose background is in the pharmaceutical industry.

However, while the team is not for sale, the Senators continue to work toward a move to downtown Ottawa. The team currently play out of the Canadian Tire Centre in suburban Kanata.

The Senators hope to build a new stadium at LeBreton Flats in downtown Ottawa. Melnyk has since established RendesVouz LeBreton Group, the preferred proponent for the building rights that will lead negotiations with the National Capital Commission.

Should the two sides reach an agreement, the project will then seek municipal and federal approval.

LeBron James has already made upward of $200 million in his NBA playing career, and many millions more in endorsements. He has a lifetime contract with Nike that reportedly pays him more than $30 million per year. He owns his own production company, and a minority stake in Premier League powerhouse Liverpool. His playing days don’t appear anywhere close to over, but he’s already set up extremely well for retirement.

Like Michael Jordan before him, James’ post-career years seem destined to include ownership of an NBA franchise; James himself has said that’s part of his plan. It would make sense for that team to be his hometown Cleveland Cavaliers, who he has almost single-handedly dragged to prominence over 11 seasons.

But, as much as James – and likely, the people of Cleveland – would welcome that, a lot of pieces would have to fall into place for it to happen, including the willingness of current owner Dan Gilbert to sell at least a portion of his majority stake.

“To be an owner of any team would be crazy,” James told The Athletic’s Jason Lloyd. “If this thing opened up and I’m in a position financially, and I’ve got the right team around me, obviously. But who’s to say Dan will (sell)? I’ve always kept it just player/owner at this point. I guess once I come down to that point, if the conversation needed to be had, I’ll have it. But I don’t have it right now.”

If and when it does come time to have the conversation, James may be a victim of his own success. His spectacular play has helped significantly boost the valuation of the Cavs – Gilbert bought the team for $375 million back in 2005.

The Houston Rockets, the most recent NBA franchise to be sold, went for $2.2 billion.

“I know how much the team cost when he bought it,” James said. “And I know how much it’s worth now – over $1 billion if he wanted it.”

If you’d like to join majority owner Vivek Ranadive – and larger-than-life minority owner Shaquille O’Neal – on the Sacramento Kings‘ ownership group, now’s your chance.

An unidentified minority owner is reportedly looking to sell a 10 percent stake in the Kings, according to Bloomberg’s Scott Soshnick.

Be forewarned: Based on recent valuations of NBA franchises, owning even a small slice of the organization will cost a king’s ransom.

Earlier this summer, the Houston Rockets‘ worth was effectively set at $2.2 billion after being sold to restaurateur Tilman Fertitta. Then, just this past Friday, e-commerce mogul Joseph Tsai reportedly reached an agreement to buy 49 percent of the Brooklyn Nets at a $2.3-billion valuation; the Alibaba co-founder is said to have an option to complete full ownership of the team in four years.

Ranadive bought 65 percent of the Kings from the Maloof family in 2013 at a then-NBA-record $534-million valuation. In the years since, the league’s stature and revenue have both skyrocketed, making NBA ownership one of the hottest games in town for billionaires.

While Sacramento is not considered one of the most valuable franchises in the league, the days of sub-billion team valuations appear to be a dwindling. Even a 10 percent stake in the Kings will likely cost a prospective suitor well over $100 million. In February, Forbes gave the Kings a $1.1-billion valuation, but the reported figures from the respective Rockets and Nets sales suggest that estimate may be very conservative.