NBA Chairman Joins Consortium Bidding For Chelsea FC

    • Larry Tanenbaum is reportedly joining Stephen Pagliuca’s consortium.
    • The deadline to submit final offers is Thursday.

Chelsea FC bidders were given an extra three days to submit their offers, and Stephen Pagliuca is using the time to his advantage — the Boston Celtics co-owner has recruited NBA chairman Larry Tanenbaum as a backer.

The Canadian is chairman of Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, the company that owns Toronto FC, the Maple Leafs, the Raptors, and the Argonauts.

  • Tanenbaum joins Pagliuca’s group of investors that reportedly include Passport Capital founder John Burbank and Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin. 
  • Former Disney executive Bob Iger was also said to be approached about joining the bid.

Pagliuca would have to offload his stake in Serie A’s Atalanta if his Chelsea bid is successful.

The other bidders include a consortium led by Los Angeles Dodgers, Lakers, and Sparks owner Todd Boehly, a group led by Sports Investment Partners chairman Sir Martin Broughton, and a consortium led by the Ricketts family, who own the Chicago Cubs.

Abramovich’s Soccer Switch

Roman Abramovich put the team up for sale as he was sanctioned by the U.K. government for his ties to Vladimir Putin, but that hasn’t cooled his interest in buying soccer teams. The oligarch is reportedly looking to purchase La Liga’s Valencia club once the Chelsea FC sale is completed, according to a rival bidder.

Tanenbaum’s addition is thought to be attractive to Abramovich due to his work combating antisemitism, though the government is reportedly satisfied with all four bidders.