Monday, May 23, 2005The Price Is Right?
Bain and Game Plan LLC, a Boston-based firm that arranges the sale of professional sports teams, in March made a $3.5 billion offer for the league, which still hasn't resolved a labor dispute with players that forced it to cancel its season. The new offer, which topped $4 billion, was made yesterday, said the people, who asked not to be identified.
"We haven't given up, that's for sure,'' Bob Caporale, Game Plan's chairman, said in a telephone interview. He declined to confirm that a revised offer was submitted to the league.
League spokesman Frank Brown said, "I will not confirm any aspect of what you're reporting.''
Now while it'll take 30 owners to approve this and I don't think it'll happen, I do believe that the price isn't that far off. Let's be real, 23 owners were ready to take this deal when the group offer a little over 3 billion. There are a few stickler owners, which hockey can easily do without, who want to do nothing more than be hockey owners. They don't care about the team or the negative press, they just want something to have and toy with.
John Moag, chief executive of Baltimore-based investment banking firm Moag & Co., said the new offer won't be enough to convince owners to sell.
"It remains highly unlikely,'' Moag said in an interview. "The owners didn't buy these teams to make a killing. They bought them to enjoy and hold onto.''
And therein lies the problem. The owners are enjoying a team that no one can watch.
Bain Increases Bid for NHL [Bloomberg]