Sixers up for sale
76ers Sale "Imminent"
Philadelphia 76ers owner Comcast-Spectacor is in talks to sell the team to a group led by New York-based leveraged buyout specialist Joshua Harris
Tags: Henry Abbott, TrueHoop76ers Sale "Imminent"
Philadelphia 76ers owner Comcast-Spectacor is in talks to sell the team to a group led by New York-based leveraged buyout specialist Joshua Harris, according to sources.
Negotiations are ongoing and a source with knowledge of the talks called a deal "imminent."
The Associated Press, citing a person familiar with the deal who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the team could be sold within the week. The source said Harris' group was not the only bidder but is now the lead bidder, adding the deal has been in the works for several months.
Once the parties reach final agreement, it would become official only with approval of the league's Board of Governors.
In a statement, Comcast-Spectacor chief operating officer Peter Luukko told The AP there are "discussions about the future of the team" that are confidential, but did not address a possible sale.
Harris, 46, co-founded Apollo Global Management, which invests primarily in distressed properties, in 1990. In Forbes' 2011 billionaire rankings, Harris was reported to have a net worth of $1.5 billion.
Harris, through an Apollo spokeswoman, declined comment.
Other investors in the deal include private equity executive David Blitzer and former NBA player agent and Sacramento Kings executive Jason Levien.
Blitzer moved from New York to London in 2002 to create the London-based European office of the Blackstone Group, one of the largest private investment groups in the world.
As an agent, Levien represented players including Kevin Martin, Luol Deng and Udonis Haslem.
Harris and Blitzer have Philadelphia ties, having graduated from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania within a few years of each other.
Through his holding company Spectacor, Ed Snider has controlled the Sixers since 1996 -- the same year Spectacor merged with Comcast. Comcast-Spectacor also owns the NHL's Philadelphia Flyers, and the Wells Fargo Center where both teams play. The company would continue to own and operate the arena with the Sixers as a tenant, according to sources.
The Associated Press left a message for Snider seeking comment.
Last edited by insidehoops : 07-13-2011 at 09:19 PM.