This is just a hilarious story over at Yahoo news about why billionaires like Warren Buffett , Robert E. Rich, Jr ($2.1b), and Herb Simon own minor league teams. They don’t have to pay for salaries or equipment and then there’s this beautiful nugget that NSS won’t include in their report to City of Wilmington leaders:
It’s a sweet deal made even sweeter by the cities and counties that are willing to finance minor league stadiums in order to help stimulate their local economies.
In other words, they make money because taxpayers get bilked. Looking further, you find that teams are simply a commodity that can be traded by folks and that doesn’t mean allegiance to the stadiums paid for by taxpayers:
Another example of the great return on investment is the owners’ ability to sell teams for much more than the original purchase price. Craig Stein and Joe Finley bought the Ottawa Lynx in 2006 for an estimated $14 million. They relocated the team to Allentown, where it became the Lehigh Valley IronPigs
Oh and they’re NOT necessarily transparent. The story relied on the better performing teams and ignored the financial losers. But clearly, there is still a lot that is NOT available:
When a team’s financial details were unavailable, we made comparisons to teams in similar markets for which we had definitive data.
In the end, it’s a shame that with such lucrative money to be made that franchise owners have to use starry eyed local elected leaders to pony up tax dollars to support an otherwise great American past-time.
We still don’t know if it is legal for Wilmington to do what Flywheel/Trask wants them to, nobody is asking and the city certainly isn’t letting us know.
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