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Sportico (via Yahoo Sports) is reporting that the Melnyk family has hired Galatioto Sports Partners to explore a potential sale of the Ottawa Senators. Galatioto Sports Partners is an investment bank that specializes in the professional sports industry.
A partial or full sale has long been rumoured and speculated about, with chatter especially picking up since the passing of Eugene Melnyk. While the Sportico piece is very light on details, it is the first to go beyond rumour and vague whispers of intent or interest by naming any of the other players (potentially) involved.
Sportico pegs the team’s valuation at $665 million, and points out that movement in the ongoing LeBreton Flats negotiations could drive that higher.
None of the Melnyk family, the team, or Galatioto Sports Partners have provided comment on this report. More details will be reported here as they become available.
Update, Nov 4th 9:47AM:
The Senators have publicly announced that the team is officially for sale. The press release doesn’t really provide much more detail than what was already reported, though it does include one notable line - “A condition of any sale will be that the team remains in Ottawa.”
There are already several rumours about interested parties, including Minto CEO and OSEG partner Roger Greenberg, Farm Boy executive Jeff York, former Penguins minority owners Jeffrey and Michael Kimel, Hamilton Bulldogs and Candiens minority owner Michael Andlauer, retired CEO of Power Corp (and member of the previous competing LeBreton bid) André Desmarais, unnamed groups out the US, and of course, Ryan Reynolds.
The process is just getting started, so buckle up.