SBD/26/Franchises

SCHOTT & HOFMANN EARN A'S OLD FASHIONED WAY; THEY BUY THEM

     "For a bargain basement price of $85 million," the Haas
family sold the A's to Bay Area developers Stephen Schott and
Kenneth Hofmann -- who, in turn, pledged to keep the team in
Oakland for at least 10 years.  Schott: "On behalf of Ken Hofmann
and myself, we look forward to a long stay in the Bay Area."  The
Haas family had put the team on the market for $85M, with the
provision that the low price apply only if the new owners kept
the team in Oakland.  The family claims to have lost close to
$33M from '91-93 on the team.  As part of the deal, the city of
Oakland and Alameda County, which owns Oakland Coliseum, have
agreed to issue $20M bonds to remodel skyboxes, build new club
seats and create a club lounge within the next six years.  Schott
and Hofmann will also receive 100% of parking, concession, and
advertising revenues.  To help pay off the bonds, the A's "will
levy a 25-cent surcharge on all tickets," pay about $3.5M from a
new concession contract, and "earmark 90% of the proceeds" from
selling the naming rights to the Oakland Coliseum to a corporate
sponsor.  When asked about the deal, County Supervisor Mary King
said it "was better than an empty stadium. ... The economy is
hurt when we lose a team."  Schott, 56, who will be the managing
partner, said he was "reluctant" to buy the team, but said the
Oakland Bay Area "deserves a baseball team.  It didn't deserve to
lose another franchise" (Frances Dinkelspiel, SAN JOSE MERCURY
NEWS, 1/26).  Schott:  "Baseball is at an all time low.  I'm
looking forward to it getting better. I'm optimistic the strike
won't last forever."  Hofmann, 71 and part owner of the Seahawks,
was not available for comment (Witt, Slonaker & Akizuki, SAN JOSE
MERCURY NEWS, 1/26).
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