Capitol Fax.com - Your Illinois News Radar » The motivation behind Zell’s moves
SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax      Advertise Here      Mobile Version     Exclusive Subscriber Content     Updated Posts    Contact
CapitolFax.com
To subscribe to Capitol Fax, click here.
The motivation behind Zell’s moves

Monday, Mar 31, 2008

* The New York Times had this unsurprising quote about Tribune owner Sam Zell yesterday…

“He actually dislikes baseball,” Jerry Reinsdorf, the owner of Chicago’s crosstown White Sox, said matter-of-factly. “He never would have bought the Cubs if they didn’t come with the Tribune. It’s just another asset to him.”

Reinsdorf’s claim was essentially confirmed by team chairman Crane Kenney.

* This brings us to the uproar over the sale of the Cubs, Wrigley Field and the park’s naming rights. Crain’s has the story behind the story…

[The Tribune Co.] has about $12 billion in debt, most of it the result of Mr. Zell’s leveraged buyout in December. A first payment of $650 million comes due Dec. 4.

* Selling the team, the park and the naming rights would more than cover that first payment. And that was the initial plan. Zell doesn’t care about baseball. The team is just another asset to be dumped. But the stadium deal is taking longer than expected, to say the least. So Zell - who is facing a depressed advertising market - is now looking to sell other assets to cover his nut.

But that doesn’t take the heat off the Wrigley deal.,,

Tribune will quickly face another deadline: July 2009, when a $750-million principal payment comes due. That’s on top of an estimated $1 billion in yearly interest payments.

Zell is sitting on top of a shakey house of cards, so expect the pressure to intensify on the proposed state buyout of Wrigley Field, regardless of any interim asset sales.

* More…

* Cubs play hardball with rooftop owner

* Wrigley Field looking at changes as Cubs start season

* There was an old ballpark in Chicago . . .

- Posted by Rich Miller        

7 Comments
  1. - Ghost - Monday, Mar 31, 08 @ 10:17 am:

    Iltimatly if Zell changes the name of the Stadium, people will grumble, Zell will deposit the money in the bank, and life will go on. Real cub fans should be fighting for Zell to complete his sale and get out of the picture.

    The State is facing a fiscal nightmare and should dodge away from purchasing wrigley like the Gov confronting a question on his dealinga with Rezko and Levine.


  2. - jerry 101 - Monday, Mar 31, 08 @ 10:35 am:

    so, when does the cubs fire sale begin? just another asset to be sold. why pay all those huge salaries. might as well go with KC salaries. That’d save about $100 million.


  3. - wordslinger - Monday, Mar 31, 08 @ 10:40 am:

    The way Zell structured the deal, he can either make a lot of money, or he can make a whole lot of money. The only ones who can lose are Trib. Corp. employees. Amazing.


  4. - The Doc - Monday, Mar 31, 08 @ 10:46 am:

    As usual, the mainstream media focus is on the general public’s adverse reaction to naming rights. It’s going to happen, one way or another, whether it’s under Zell’s watch or the subsequent owner. What we should be most concerned about is the potential state purchase and the accompanying sales-tax freeze.


  5. - Boone Logan Square - Monday, Mar 31, 08 @ 11:25 am:

    Given the money owed to Soriano, Lee, Ramirez, and Zambrano, it is possible we might see a fire sale along the lines of what the Marlins did in 1998 (when Wayne Huizenga forced Dave Dombrowski to unload most of the World Series team quickly). A question for Cubs fans is will Jim Hendry be able to get good talent in return? It’s possible the Cubs will have to throw in prospects in order to get teams to take these large contracts.


  6. - Levois - Monday, Mar 31, 08 @ 11:57 am:

    Why doesn’t the cranky old man just sell to the highest bidder, instead of selling to the state.


  7. - David Starrett - Monday, Mar 31, 08 @ 2:48 pm:

    Looks like we may see Jeff Samardija starting sooner than expected.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


* Reader comments closed for the weekend
* State Journal-Register endorses Rauner "with reservations"
* *** UPDATED x1 *** Pritzker campaign lawyer hints at defamation suit, claims campaign was never served
* Rauner says he's "trying to eradicate" the Madigan machine "cancer," but the "treatments are tough"
* Question of the day
* *** UPDATED x1 - Speaker Ryan to campaign for Davis *** Trump likely coming to Illinois to boost Bost
* Musical Interlude: Try (just a little bit harder)
* Tell me another fairytale, Grandpa
* Rauner again denies any delays at Quincy veterans' home
* "Speed dating" candidates
* Lawyer won't answer simple questions as some anonymous former Pritzker staffers speak out
* AFL-CIO launches "massive" digital ad buy
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Today's edition of Capitol Fax (use all CAPS in password)
* *** LIVE COVERAGE ***
* Yesterday's stories

Support CapitolFax.com
Visit our advertisers...

...............

...............

...............

...............

...............
<


Loading


Main Menu
Home
Illinois
YouTube
Pundit rankings
Obama
Subscriber Content
Durbin
Burris
Blagojevich Trial
Advertising
Updated Posts
Polls

Archives
October 2018
September 2018
August 2018
July 2018
June 2018
May 2018
April 2018
March 2018
February 2018
January 2018
December 2017
November 2017
October 2017
September 2017
August 2017
July 2017
June 2017
May 2017
April 2017
March 2017
February 2017
January 2017
December 2016
November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
January 2006
December 2005
April 2005
March 2005
February 2005
January 2005
December 2004
November 2004
October 2004

Blog*Spot Archives
November 2005
October 2005
September 2005
August 2005
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005

Syndication

RSS Feed 2.0
Comments RSS 2.0
WordPress




Hosted by MCS SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax Advertise Here Mobile Version Contact Rich Miller