No surprise here. On Tuesday, NFL owners voted to approve hedge fund manager David Tepper as the new owner of the Panthers.
Tepper is no stranger to the NFL community thanks to his time as a minority owner of the Steelers, so his approval at the Atlanta meetings was viewed as a mere formality. Between now and the finalization of his purchase – which is expected to take place in July – he’ll sell his 5% stake in the Steelers.
Tepper is paying $2.2 billion in cash for the club, plus another $75MM in deferred payment, bringing the total purchase price to a league record $2.275 billion. Tepper’s bid may not have been the highest of the bunch as there have been rumblings of bids in the $2.5 billion range.
The transaction sets a new watermark for the league and bodes well for future club values as television rights are expected to increase. The country’s relaxation of sports gambling laws should also aid the league’s growth and the next owner to sell his franchise could conceivably receive $2.5 billion.
The sale to Tepper also allows the league to quickly move on from the Jerry Richardson scandal of 2017. On Tuesday, Richardson will give a farewell address to his colleagues.