SBD/Issue 96/Franchises

Rooneys In Talks To Possibly Add Another Investor For Steelers

Rooney Reportedly Looking To Add
Philadelphia Native As Fourth Investor
The Rooney family "may bring on an additional investment partner as it seeks to complete a new ownership structure that consolidates" the Steelers into the hands of Chair Dan Rooney and President Art Rooney II, according to Timothy McNulty of the PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE. Michigan-based private equity firm Equity 11 Managing Partner J.B. Smith yesterday confirmed that he is in "investment talks with the Rooney clan, after he was viewed at the Steelers victory party and other Super Bowl events over the weekend." Smith "would not say how much he is putting into the team, but said it was 'a sizable investment' in the tens of millions of dollars." Smith, a Philadelphia native, said, "I could invest in other places with better returns, but I want to help these guys out so they keep control." McNulty notes Smith would be the fourth new major investment partner since Dan and Art took control of the team. Smith "would not describe his role in the investment team, but said it was due to be finalized by March 31, the closing date the Rooneys gave the NFL." Equity 11 owns companies including identity theft prevention firm iSekurity and Ecology Coatings. The proposed Steelers investment "would be from a division of Equity 11 called Reign Sports" (PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE, 2/5).

CELEBRATORY COSTS: Pittsburgh Public Safety Dir Michael Huss said that the city "spent $79,500 to deploy 258 police officers and legions of clean-up crews" for the Steelers Super Bowl XLIII victory parade, which drew an estimated 350,000 people on Tuesday. In Pittsburgh, Jeremy Boren notes the Steelers "did not contribute any money, and the team did not return a call seeking comment." After the team's win Sunday, fans "flooded city streets," and costs were "higher in part because of overtime shifts and use of police, firefighters and other personnel." Huss said that the money to "cover both celebrations will come from an annual allocation the state gives Pittsburgh to host 'regional events'" (Pittsburgh TRIBUNE-REVIEW, 2/5).

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