WASHINGTON (DC News Now) — After Dan and Tanya Snyder opened the door to possibly sell the Washington Commanders, reports pointed to billionaires considering team ownership.
But the Snyders’ announcement–and a notable lack of specificity on what “potential transactions” they, and Bank of America will consider–prompted questions about whether the pair would leave the team fully or in part and possibly build a new stadium.
Depending on the outcome of a professional sports team sale, fan experiences may be subject to change.
“It remains to be seen, to see whether prices are actually raised,” said Matt Winkler, a professor of sports business at American University, adding, “there’s going to be so much goodwill with a new owner, no matter who it is, that I can see one: the owner keeping the prices the same. But, also, two: fans being OK with some higher prices, with this new sense of hope that the franchise has.”
Towson University Professor Thomas Rhoads, who specializes in sports economics, told DC News Now, “you might actually see more people get interested in thinking the Commanders could do well. And, so, whoever comes in as a new owner would have to figure out how to make that [the team] a better product,” to support a more expensive fan experience.
Forbes valued the Commanders at $5.6 billion in late August, more than the average team value at $4.5 billion.
Two metrics to become an NFL team owner are key, including at least a 30 percent stake in the team, as well as a majority approval from all 32 NFL team owners–24 ‘yes’ votes are needed.
But a multibillion-dollar franchise purchase is not necessarily secured to the highest bidder–people interested are subject to deep financial reviews, in addition to existing team owner approval.
“The next owners meeting is at the Super Bowl in early February…” “…I would think they’d [potential buyers] have everything lined up. If they do vote, like in politics, you want to know that you have the 24 plus votes,” Winkler added.
Rhoads pointed to “a lof of legal issues,” associated with brokering a deal to sell the team, giving the example of “Elon Musk with Twitter, that took a little bit of time.”