The Washington Commanders of the National Football League (NFL) have been sold to a consortium led by private-equity financier and professional sports team owner Josh Harris. The deal, valued at approximately $6 billion, is still subject to NFL approval, but if given the green light, it will top last year’s $4.65 billion sale of the Denver Broncos to Walmart heir Rob Walton. The purchase and sale agreement calls for Harris and partners to acquire the Washington Commanders from the Snyder family. The agreement is subject to NFL approval as well as the satisfaction of customary closing conditions.
Pressure on the Snyder Family
The team’s owner, Dan Snyder, hired investment bankers to explore a sale months ago, as Snyder and the Commanders have been the subjects of recent probes by both the House Oversight Committee and the NFL surrounding allegations of sexual harassment and financial misconduct. Despite mounting pressure among other owners to have Snyder removed as owner, he was not forced to sell the team.
New Ownership Group
Josh Harris, who is a majority owner of the NBA’s Philadelphia Sixers and NHL’s New Jersey Devils, is partnering with NBA legend Magic Johnson and Mitch Rales, a longtime business partner. Other members of the new ownership group include Michael Sapir, CEO of ProShares, and former Google CEO Eric Schmidt. There are other partners in the group who aren’t listed in the press release announcing the deal. Harris will be the lead owner. The deal comes as there’s been calls for more Black ownership of NFL teams.
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