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EXPOS LOSE MINORITY INVESTOR DUE TO CONFLICT OF INTEREST
Published January 30, 1995
The Expos have lost one of their minority shareholders due to "conflict of interest guidelines set out by the commissioner's office." Versa Services, a Toronto-based food-concession business that holds the food rights at Olympic Stadium, has been "advised that it cannot own part of two teams" after its U.S. parent, Aramark, recently purchased a portion of the Red Sox through its acquisition of Harry M. Stevens. Versa had put close to $5M into the Expos, when it become a minority partner with 13 other shareholders when the "consortium purchased the franchise" in '91. Versa will retain its Olympic Stadium contract for the '95 season. The Expos lost close to C$22M last season, and owners still owe on a C$13M loan from the city of Montreal and a C$18M loan from the Province of Quebec. Despite the financial problems and the labor work stoppage, the Expos "consortium appears unified" and there is no indication anyone of them wants to sell. But since the group bought the team, no partner has "poured additional money" into the team and no new owners have "come on board" (Danny Gallagher, Toronto GLOBE & MAIL, 1/30).