SBD/4/Franchises

LABATT MAY HAVE NEW PARTNERS IN SPORTS BY SUMMER

     John Labatt Ltd., "buoyed by the end of the baseball strike,
may have new partners for some of its sports businesses by early
summer," according to Labatt President George Taylor.  Taylor
said the company is negotiating with "several parties" about the
possibility of them investing in Labatt's sports assets, which
include the Blue Jays, the SkyDome, CFL's Argonauts and TSN.
Taylor said the company is talking with five or six U.S. firms
and a larger number of Canadian companies about teaming up with
Labatt in sports.  Taylor noted that a foreign company can only
own up to 20% of a Canadian broadcaster under current
regulations.  Taylor noted that the strike's end should help ink
these deals sooner (Marina Strauss, Toronto GLOBE & MAIL, 4/4).
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