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NFL owners pushing for PE investment

A group of National Football League owners wants private equity firms and other institutional investors to be allowed to buy stakes in their clubs and is planning to lobby for a change to ownership rules, according to a report by Bloomberg.

A group of National Football League (NFL) owners wants private equity firms and other institutional investors to be allowed to buy stakes in their clubs and is planning to lobby for a change to ownership rules, according to a report by Bloomberg.

Several unnamed Bloomberg sources have said that a push for change could come at the NFL’s annual meeting which is currently underway in Phoenix, Arizona, despite new ownership rules not being on the agenda.

The group intends to use the meeting as a forum to persuade other owners to seriously consider changes at next year’s meeting, according to the sources.  

The initiative comes at a time of skyrocketing value for professional sports teams that the group is looking to tap into, but can’t due to NFL restrictions. Under current NFL ownership rules, the lead investor of an ownership group must have at least a 30% equity stake, which in reality equates to billions of dollars in ready cash, while no ownership group can exceed 25 people, and public companies, sovereign wealth funds and private equity investors are barred from owning shares of teams.

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