SBD/Issue 60/Franchises

NHL BOG Approves Matthew Hulsizer's Plan To Purchase Coyotes

Hulsizer (c) Wins Approval From NHL To Buy
Coyotes; Glendale Lease Issue Still Looms

PEAK6 Investments CEO Matthew Hulsizer yesterday "won unanimous approval" from the NHL BOG to buy the Coyotes, according to Jeff Klein of the N.Y. TIMES. The NHL, "which has owned and operated the Coyotes for the last year and a half after the club filed for bankruptcy, has imposed a Dec. 31 deadline for the sale of the club to keep it in the Phoenix area." Hulsizer: "I'm optimistic that we are going to get this thing done by the end of the year." Hulsizer is "negotiating with the city of Glendale" over the lease to Jobing.com Arena, a "stumbling block for previous prospective buyers." Hulsizer said, "I believe we have negotiated most of the lease and we are just waiting to finalize that." He added that "that would happen at a Dec. 14 meeting of the Glendale City Council" (N.Y. TIMES, 12/7). Hulsizer said, "This is not a home-run investment for us. It's been my experience that if you make a great product, hockey teams have a lot of value. Those things tend to grow over time. I tend to be a longer-term investor. As I look out 25 years, I think people will look back and say 'Hey, that might have looked smart.' Right now, it's not going to look smart for a long time though." While Hulsizer will be the majority owner of the Coyotes, he said that he "won't be running" the team. ESPN.com's Scott Burnside noted "some members of the Ice Edge group of investors, the group of businessmen who tried to buy the team last spring, seem likely to play a role when the purchase is completed." Hulsizer said that they "will be minority owners as well." Hulsizer added that he "expects to bring in a president of the team who will have credibility in the hockey world" (ESPN.com, 12/6). The GLOBE & MAIL's David Shoalts cites sources as saying that Hulsizer and Glendale are "negotiating a multi-year lease that could pay him $100-million toward the Coyotes' annual losses through parking charges, taxes and property levies from a community-facilities district created around Jobing.com Arena" (GLOBE & MAIL, 12/7).

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