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Fleet Financial Group announced it has arranged $405M in financing for MLB. The credit facility will be used by participating MLB teams to refinance existing debt and for general corporate purposes. The credit facility, arranged by Fleet's Sports Lending Group and funded by Fleet's Blue Keel Funding LLC, enables participating MLB clubs to access the commercial paper market through the securitization of certain shared revenues, including those from national media contracts and licensing and sponsorship. A group of banks led by Fleet National Bank will provide a liquidity facility to support the commercial paper issuance (Fleet). The credit agreement with MLB is extended from 2000 to 2005 and the amount that MLB teams can borrow increased from $250M under the previous deal (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 4/28). Fleet's Sports Lending Group's Patrick McAuliffe: "All of the leagues, [MLB] included, have certain shared revenue sources -- a large portion of them are media revenue. This basically harnesses the revenue flow and makes it available, right now" (Gregg Krupa, BOSTON GLOBE, 4/28).
Zapata Corp., controlled by Bucs Owner Malcolm Glazer and his family, "bought two online magazines Monday and plans to buy more," according to Kris Hundley of the ST. PETERSBURG TIMES. TX-based Zapata has acquired Word and Charged online magazines from NJ-based Icon CMT Corp, which had suspended publication of the magazines in March. Word was one of the Internet's first magazines, focusing on life, work and social issues. Charged was devoted to extreme sports like skateboarding and rock-climbing. With the companies new focus on the Web, Zapata also announced it is changing its name to Zap Corp. (ST. PETERSBURG TIMES, 4/28).