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THOMAS TOURS WALL STREET: BIG HURT TAKES CUT AT ATHLETE BOND
Published August 7, 1998
White Sox DH Frank Thomas is negotiating with NY-based securities firm SPP Hambro & Co. for a sale of $20M of nine- year bonds which "will give him a large lump of untaxed money immediately, while reducing his share" of the $7M annual salary he is set to collect through 2006, according to Dan Weil of BLOOMBERG. Tony Decello, VP at Investment Advisors Int'l, said "he heard" that the Thomas bond will carry interest payments of 7.5% to 8%, "about the same as utility bonds with a junk rating of BB3." Decello: "To borrow at 7-8 percent and invest and earn 10-12 percent -- that's the play." Weil wrote that the risks that must be taken to earn double-digit investment returns "cause some athletes' financial advisers to reject the bond idea." Jan Plewes of Advantage Int'l: "We're conservative, so I don't see where we would advise doing it." FAME co-Founder Curtis Polk also said that he wouldn't be interested in bonds for his clients. A spokesperson for Thomas "wouldn't say how he will invest the proceeds from his bond sale" but one report said that Thomas "will use the money to fund his businesses, including a record label" (BLOOMBERG, 8/6). In N.Y., Richard Wilner confirms that Thomas' record label, Un-D-Nyable Entertainment, "is looking to expand" (N.Y. POST, 8/7).