How do you thwart a cash heavy bid by Mark Cuban? Try a marriage.
That’s what is happening with Sports Properties Acquisition, Corp. which has figure heads Jack Kemp and Henry Aaron, but is heavily funded by New York City taxicab magnate Andrew Murstein.
Now, a “Washington Nationals/Montreal Expos” flair has been thrown into the mix.
According to the Washington Post, Fred Malek, who was considered to be one of the front runners for the purchase of the Washington Nationals, and former Montreal Expos president Tony Tavares have joined SPAC, thus giving the bidding group a strong “MLB face.” As reported by the Washington Post:
Malek, who declined to comment, headed his group alone until a few weeks ago, when the Tavares-Murstein-Kemp alliance joined forces with him.
Malek's group is using an unusual vehicle to buy the team. The entity is called a special-purpose acquisition company, or SPAC. Also known as blank-check firms, SPACs raise money by selling stock to the public and then scouring the world for businesses to buy.
Kemp, Tavares and Murstein formed a SPAC -- known as Sports Properties Acquisition -- in January to buy sports teams, stadiums and other entertainment companies. The company has had an initial public offering but has not yet purchased anything with the proceeds. Shares have traded between $9.50 and $9 since the IPO.
In other news, word is that Cuban is trying to find others to join his bid that have local connections to the Chicago area. So far, no one has taken him up on his offer. If he is able to pull together local minority members, it would further bolster his position. Currently, Cuban has the highest reported bid for the Cubs at $1.3 billion.