What's your opinion of MLSE sale? Fri, December 9, 2011
By ROB LONGLEY, QMI Agency
The Ontario Teachers Pension Plan has cashed out its controlling stake of the Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment empire — selling to a pair of media giants.
A story first reported by the QMI Agency on Thursday night was confirmed Friday morning at the Air Canada Centre.
After years of speculation, the majority stake in the parent company of the Maple Leafs, Raptors, ACC and more has been sold to an unlikely partnership of two of Canada’s communication giants — Rogers Communication and BCE, the parent company of Bell.
The deal sees Bell and Rogers buy and split 75% of MLSE shares for $1.32 billion. Construction magnate Larry Tanenbaum, who holds the remaining 20.5% interest in MLSE, increases his ownership to 25%.
Bell and Rogers represent TSN and Sportsnet, the No. 1 and 2 sports broadcasting powers in Canada, but they will call a truce and split the shares with so many lucrative deals to be spun off their union. It is believed that neither company felt it could afford losing out to its competitor, especially given the value of TV rights to the Leafs in this country.
What's your opinion on the sale of MLSE to both media giants? Have your say in our forum.