SBD/June 13, 2012/Franchises

Source Says Sale Of Padres Is Down To Three Bidders; Decision Could Come Next Week

Sources said the sale price of the Padres could meet or exceed $800M
The sale of the Padres "is gaining momentum," according to Ken Rosenthal of FOXSPORTS.com. A source said that three bidders "remain, and Padres owner John Moores expects to select a buyer between Wednesday and Friday of next week." The source added that a group led by former Dodgers Owner Peter O’Malley "is one of the finalists, and the other two bidders also are from southern California." The source said that one is a "businessman from Orange County" and the other is "a private equity investor from Los Angeles, but declined to identify them further." The source added that a fourth bidder -- Legendary Pictures CEO Thomas Tull -- was "eliminated when he failed to reach the desired sale price." The source said that the sale price for the Padres is "expected to meet or exceed" $800M -- $600M for the club and $200M "for a portion of the team’s equity stake in Fox Sports San Diego." The source also noted that if a buyer "is indeed selected next week, a purchase agreement could be in place by the All-Star break and the deal could close by August" (FOXSPORTS.com, 6/12). In San Diego, Kevin Acee notes Tull yesterday "was set to advise his financial partners of his decision" to withdraw his bid. Baseball HOFer and San Diego State Univ. baseball coach Tony Gwynn, who had joined Tull's group, "had no financial stake in the Tull bid." A source yesterday explained Tull's decision to withdraw, saying the purchase "doesn't economically make sense." The source added that Tull's group "made a 'respectable' offer but that the amount of money needed to buy the club did not feasibly leave enough money to improve the product on the field" (SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE, 6/13).
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