NFL’s Panthers a Great Bet for Investor Tepper

May 21, 2018 James Heinsman In the News

David Tepper, billionaire hedge fund manager, is after the NFL’s Carolina Panthers for

Image of David Tepper of Appaloosa Management. Photo courtesy of Wikipedia and Appaloosa Management.

about $2.2 billion about double what Forbes says it was worth in 2007, about $957 million. Observers see his move as one with long-term promise. The deal is still not approved, the NFL has to sign-off before it is official, but if it does pass muster, it will be the largest amount ever paid for a football franchise. The previous record was set in 2014 when the Pegula family purchased the Buffalo bills for what was then an astounding $1.4 billion.

Forking over more than $2 billion seems outlandish, but analysts agree that the team should pay Tepper back, and then some. In just two years the Pegulas saw the price of the Bills climb to $1.6 billion in only two years, bringing in $200 million more than their original investment. But Tepper is likely looking at the industry and sees where it is heading: up.

As the way people enjoy sports, and especially football, evolves, more avenues for making money are presenting themselves. Football fans can now watch games online using several venues: Amazon, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube are all skirmishing for rights to broadcast games.

Also fueling the value climb will be the recent US Supreme Court decision to allow states to legalize sports gambling. One investor, Mark Cuban, said the decision was wonderful news for sports investors and the gaming industry.

“I think everyone who owns a top four professional sports team just basically saw the value of their team double,” the owner of the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks said in a “Squawk Alley” interview. “It can finally become fun to go to a baseball game again.”

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