Pegula S&E Bracing For Different Future Amid Pandemic Fallout
Pegula Sports & Entertainment co-Owners Terry and Kim Pegula are "preparing for the possibility that their sports and entertainment businesses ... might never be the same," according to Wolf & Lysowski of the BUFFALO NEWS. Kim Pegula said of how the coronavirus will affect business, "That might mean it's smaller." Wolf & Lysowski noted the Pegulas are "operating as if they won't receive any significant income from their sports and entertainment holdings for the foreseeable future." Since buying the Sabres in '11, the Pegulas "have built a sports conglomerate in Western New York." Before the layoffs, PSE-related businesses "employed more than 500 people full-time, a number that swelled to 3,000 if game-day employees are included." Kim Pegula said their goal is to "make sure we're here for a long time." Meanwhile, Wolf & Lysowski noted the Sabres' strong TV ratings on MSG Western New York "earned them a better local broadcasting deal than half the league's 30 other teams." But TV contracts "include a force majeure clause in the event of a significant event beyond either sides' control." If invoked, the sides "would negotiate to make each other whole." That could "include an extension of broadcasting rights or added advertising opportunities." However, the force majeure clause is "different in every contract." Kim Pegula said, "We're running through all these different scenarios. What does it look like if there are half of the fans in the building? ... It's the uncertainty that really hurts us right now" (BUFFALO NEWS, 4/19).