SBD/23/Franchises

SCHOTT AND HOFFMAN CLOSE TO FINALIZING SALE FOR A'S

     The Haas family is close to selling the A's for an estimated
$85M to a pair of Bay Area developers, according to a weekend
report in the SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE.  Stephen Schott, President
of the Citation Homes of Santa Clara, and Kenneth Hoffman, a part
owner of the Seahawks, could complete a deal as soon as
Wednesday, but details still need to be worked out with the
Oakland City Council and the Alameda County Board of Supervisors.
A's President Walter Haas:  "Yes, we are getting close."  One
"stumbling block" is Schott and Hoffman's reported request that
the city and county pay up to $25M in improvements to the Oakland
Coliseum and give them more control over revenue from other
events.  They are also asking for a larger percentage of the
profits from parking, concessions, etc. (Matier & Ross, SAN
FRANCISCO CHRONICLE, 1/21).  A source close to negotiations said
city and county officials are "not averse to financing Coliseum
upgrades," but will insist improvements would also accommodate
football -- in hopes of luring the Raiders back to Coliseum.  The
Haas family is also reportedly concerned about who would pay for
expenses due to the baseball work stoppage.  The team has been on
the market since May and set an asking price of $85M -- which
some analysts say is as "much as $30M below the team's worth --
to keep the team in Oakland" (Dennis Akizuki, SAN JOSE MERCURY
NEWS, 1/22).
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