Monday, March 21, 2011

Leo Hindery, Goldman Sachs among familiar names bidding for Mets share

3/20/11, NY Times: "Over the next week to 10 days, five to eight possible bidders for a minority stake in the Mets will take a first step to making an offer by examining the team’s financial records....

The candidates approved by baseball to look at the Mets’ records — three of whom have personal connections to Goldman Sachs, which has deep ties to the Yankees — include:

¶David Heller, the global co-leader of the securities division at Goldman, whose group includes Marc Spilker, a former senior Goldman executive who is now the president of Apollo Global Management, a large private equity fund. Heller’s group was the first to see the Mets’ records.

¶Steven Starker, a co-founder of BTIG, a global trading firm in which Goldman has a minority ownership. His consortium includes Kenny Dichter, a co-founder of Marquis Jets; Doug Ellin, the creator of the HBO show “Entourage”; and Randy Frankel,

¶James McCann, the founder of 1-800-Flowers.com, which is a Mets sponsor, and Anthony Scaramucci, a former Goldman executive who runs the hedge fund firm SkyBridge Capital.

¶Marc A. Utay, managing partner at Clarion Capital Partners, a private equity firm, and Leo Hindery, the first chief executive of the YES Network, who is a private media investor. From 2008 to ’09, they mounted an unsuccessful bid for the Chicago Cubs. (Goldman is part-owner of YES.) ...

The files, which let possible buyers assess the team’s financial future, include media contracts; luxury suite agreements, like those that will end after this season at Citi Field; season-ticket renewals; and details of the Mets’ loans. Still, with all the information, sports bankers say that a minority stake is not nearly as attractive as selling the entire team and any of its majority ownership

  • of the cable network SNY.

The team, Citi Field and SNY are laden with debt. Last November, facing a cash crunch, the team borrowed $25 million from Major League Baseball after reaching the $75 million limit of borrowing from M.L.B.’s industrywide bank credit line."...

----------------------------------------- "Tom Daschle backed the patron who paid him a million-dollar salary and supplied him with a free car and driver for a job inside the Obama administration, two Democrats said Monday.

Leo Hindery, whose InterMedia Partners employed the former Senate majority leader, had been mentioned as a

  • possible secretary of commerce or U.S. trade representative.

"Tom was pushing for him," said one Democratic source.

Obama's aides rejected Daschle's suggestion that a top job go to Hindery, for whose private equity fund Daschle had served as a rainmaker and adviser....

But the news that Daschle did not pay taxes on the imputed income for the car and driver has put the spotlight on Hindery, a blustery, left-leaning mogul with an office in Chrysler Building, a table at the Four Seasons, and a passion for race cars, who has styled himself

  • as organized labor’s Robert Rubin.

Democratic senators on Monday opened up a new line of defense for Daschle, saying his back-tax problems stemmed from Hindery’s failure to process the proper IRS

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