In 2017, Forbes estimated the value of the Carolina Panthers at $2.3 billion. But according to The Charlotte Observer, that number could be a little higher, as in $500 million higher.
Per The Observer, “the Panthers could sell for between $2.3 billion-$2.8 billion, experts say. And even the appearance of more credible bidders, some of whom the Observer has been able to verify, could mean a difference of a half-billion dollars in the value of the team.”
This increase in value is due to a bidding war, which is definitely bringing a smile to the face of owner Jerry Richardson and his backers. And the bidding war includes some big names with big wallets, including billionaires David Tepper, Frank and Lorenzo Fertitta, Ben Navarro and Felix Sabates.
Tepper is the founder and president of Miami based global hedge fund, Appaloosa Management. The Fertitta brother made their name by selling the UFC for an estimated $4 billion. Navarro is the founder of debt financier Sherman Financial and Sabates is a businessman based in Charlotte.
But don’t forget about the culture, which expressed serious interest in acquiring the team. First spurred on by Diddy, he was joined quickly by Steph Curry and Colin Kaepernick. Michael Jordan has also been mentioned as a possible name of interest as well.
NFL rules state that a team can be owned by up to 25 people, where one owner must own 30 percent of the team and have that sum ready to put down upfront put that sum down up front, which in this case would be around $690 million. This owner has to maintain operating control of the organization and can have a debt ceiling up to $250 million.
That’s serious cash, and if these names are serious about it, they have to get things together quickly as the league meetings start on March 25th in Orlando, with a second round to follow in Atlanta on May 21st. In addition, 75% of the league’s 32 owners must approve the sale of the team, so these men have some planning to do.
But you know Diddy won’t stop!