Developer Bruce Ratner is looking to sell his company’s 20% stake in the Brooklyn Nets, and has tapped investment bank Evercore Partners to advise him on the sale, according to multiple people familiar with the team.As I reported in October 2012, Forest City--a real estate company--was not wedded to keeping the team, which was used to leverage a real estate project. ("That was really the impetus to it, really, bringing professional sports back to Brooklyn," Ratner claimed in May 2010.)
Onexim Group has agreed to put down $200 million in cash; assume about $180 million in franchise debt from Forest City Enterprises, Bruce Ratner's parent company; eat $60 million in costs--including losses--sustained while the team remains in New Jersey; and purchase up to $106 million in junk bonds needed to finance Barclays Center infrastructure, for a total of around $550 million.(It turned out that Prokhorov offered a $75.8 million loan rather than buy those junk bonds.)
Thanks to a new arena and market, the value of the Brooklyn Nets, Forbes calculated this past January, has continued to skyrocket, from $357 million in 2012 (#14 in league, a 14% rise) to $530 million last year (#9, a 48% jump), to $780 million this year (#5, a 47% leap), the largest increase in the National Basketball Association.