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#1 Ice Man

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Posted 18 June 2005 - 05:47 AM

http://sports.espn.g...TC-DT9705204233


Lauries 'getting out of sports in St. Louis'Associated Press


ST. LOUIS -- The owners of the St. Louis Blues announced their plans to sell the franchise on Friday, citing tens of millions of dollars in losses.

Wal-Mart heirs Bill and Nancy Laurie decided to sell the NHL franchise because of heavy financial losses and concerns about the future after a lockout canceled the entire 2004-05 season.

"The Lauries made the decision to sell the team and the Savvis Center because they can no longer justify remaining active in a business which has lost more than $60 million in the past two years and is certain to continue to lose millions annually in the years ahead," Blues president Mark Sauer said in a statement.

The Lauries hold a long-term lease agreement on the Savvis Center, which is owned by the city.

The combined cash deficits of the Blues and Savvis Center since the building opened in late 1994 have exceeded $225 million, Sauer said. The Lauries' decision to sell was first reported by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch on Friday.

"Substantial future losses are projected even if you take into account what we believe will be a very successful resolution to NHL collective bargaining," Sauer said. "Those projected losses result from the current high sales and amusement taxes and the absence of city, county and state financial support of the debt service and operations of Savvis Center."


Game Plan LLC -- a Boston-based company that found buyers for the Los Angeles Dodgers, the Boston Celtics and the Ottawa Senators -- was hired to conduct the search for a new owner.

Sauer said keeping the team in St. Louis remains the Lauries' top priority but that "they are getting out of sports in St. Louis."

This isn't the first time there's been some question about the Blues' future.

The team almost moved to Saskatchewan in the 1980s before California businessman Harry Ornest stepped in with a group of companies to buy the Blues and the old St. Louis Arena. Ornest sold the team and the arena for $31 million to local investors in 1986.

The Lauries paid $100 million to buy the Blues in September 1999. A phone message left for the Lauries through their Paige Sports Entertainment offices in St. Louis was not immediately returned.

A previous ownership group, Clark Enterprises, spent more than $70 million over the previous four years to cover shortfalls on the team and the arena.

Savvis Inc., which has held the naming rights for the building since 2000, announced Thursday that it would pay $5.5 million for an early termination of its 20-year agreement.

Also SeeWant a hockey team? Blues reportedly up for sale

Edited by Ice Man, 18 June 2005 - 08:21 AM.

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#2 Devils731

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Posted 18 June 2005 - 06:27 AM

So which is it? Are the Blues cooking their book to show these huge losses? Are the new owners buying the team because having a tax write-off is so fantastic?

The Blues appear to have a really crappy set-up locally, although I'm sure 2 months ago we would have heard how the Blues actually make money and are liars for saying they aren't.

Without the new CBA the team probably couldn't have been sold at all.
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#3 Ice Man

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Posted 18 June 2005 - 08:20 AM

Devils731, What new CBA? Is it settled? Have you seen a copy? I haven't read that it was settled yet. So why is someone considering to buy the Blues, if there is someone interested at all?

As for cooking the books that's a given these team don't count all revenue associated with hockey games. Revenue that wouldn't be had if there wasn't a hockey game or the NHL.

The Blues like so many teams want the public to fund the arena and roads and public transportation however the public that didn't have much interest in the NHL has less today. So it's become: if you want it build an arena yourself with your own money OK or get out. The State of NJ bailed out on the NJ Devils. Newark just saw a chance to renew Newark using the new arena to draw outside money for other projects. Without the a sports team as anchor in Newark they wouldn't be able to rebuild Newark.

Edited by Ice Man, 18 June 2005 - 08:25 AM.

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#4 Rock

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Posted 18 June 2005 - 08:34 AM

Franchise sale needs labour peace
By DAVID SHOALTS

Saturday, June 18, 2005 Page S2
(From Toronto Globe & Mail With a report from Associated Press)
http://www.theglobea...TPSports/Hockey


Just because Wal-Mart heirs Bill and Nancy Laurie grew so tired of losing money on hockey that they put their St. Louis Blues up for sale, it does not mean there will be a shortage of buyers, although that interest will come with a condition.

There will only be willing buyers, one member of the investment banking community said, if the National Hockey League wraps up a collective labour agreement with the NHL Players' Association quickly. The league and the union met again yesterday in New York, and while an agreement is in sight, a deal is at least two weeks away.

"If that is wrapped up in a couple of weeks, I think there will be plenty of buyers for the Blues," the banker said, although he admitted there are other signs of trouble for the sale, which will include the lease on the Savvis Center, but not the arena itself.

The big problem is that Savvis, an information technology company based in Missouri, announced yesterday it will pay the Blues' parent company $5.5-million (all figures U.S.) to get out of the 20-year, $72-million naming rights deal on the team's arena. Savvis entered into the agreement in August, 2000.

"That makes it tougher but the Blues are a valuable team," the banker said. "Somebody will step up as long as the labour situation is resolved."

According to a statement released by Blues president Mark Sauer, the Lauries put the team up for sale because they have lost $60-million in the past two years and do not see any profits coming, even with a new collective labour agreement that would favour the NHL owners.

The local and state governments were blamed for this. The family bought the team and the Savvis Center in 1999.

"Substantial future losses are projected even if you take into account what we believe will be a very successful resolution to NHL collective bargaining," Sauer said. "Those projected losses result from the current high sales and amusement taxes and the absence of city, county and state financial support of the debt service and operations of Savvis Center."

Another question is how much the Lauries will get for the team and its lease. They paid $100-million for the franchise and the arena in 1999, but recent sales of NHL teams and arena leases have been closer to $60-million, and even less in some cases. The Mighty Ducks of Anaheim were recently sold to the family who own the club's arena for about $70-million , but that included the practice complex, which was valued at $10-million.

Sauer said the Blues and the arena combined have lost more than $225-million in the past 11 years.

Game Plan LLC, which is involved with Bain Capital in its bid to buy the entire NHL from the clubowners, was hired by the Lauries to find a buyer. The preference is for a local buyer to ensure the team stays in St. Louis, Mo. No one from Game Plan, which is based in Boston, could be reached for comment.
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#5 Devils731

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Posted 18 June 2005 - 10:38 AM

Devils731, What new CBA? Is it settled? Have you seen a copy? I haven't read that it was settled yet. So why is someone considering to buy the Blues, if there is someone interested at all?

As for cooking the books that's a given these team don't count all revenue associated with hockey games. Revenue that wouldn't be had if there wasn't a hockey game or the NHL.

The Blues like so many teams want the public to fund the arena and roads and public transportation however the public that didn't have much interest in the NHL has less today. So it's become: if you want it build an arena yourself with your own money OK or get out. The State of NJ bailed out on the NJ Devils. Newark just saw a chance to renew Newark using the new arena to draw outside money for other projects. Without the a sports team as anchor in Newark they wouldn't be able to rebuild Newark.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


We've seen what the cap system is basically going to be and that being the main driver behind what benefits the new owners he can be comfortable in that.

I enjoy that you want to believe that the teams will continue to lose money, but you also want to believe that teams are hiding profit left and right.
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#6 Derek21

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Posted 18 June 2005 - 10:54 AM

When are the Dolans selling the Rangers? :rolleyes: :puke:
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#7 Ice Man

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Posted 18 June 2005 - 11:56 AM

Under the present owner accounting system they don't count all the beans so loses will continue however people don't buy teams that are losing these kind of dollars.

There has to be something wrong with the accounting procedures (while legal) when considering the total revenue from a hockey game.

Example: Game item revenues in full or percentages of

Parking lot revenue
Ticket sale revenue
Program book revenue
Food and drink revenue
Merchandise revenue
TV revenue
Radio revenue
Advertising Revenue

In addition: not sold at games

Merchandise revenue
Promotional material revenue
Advertising revenue


I have probably missed a few.

But if you only count ticket sales one is not counting all the revenue from the hockey game or team. So you have losses. That's my point.
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#8 Devils731

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Posted 18 June 2005 - 12:07 PM

And you know those all aren't being counted because you've audited those teams?
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Your unconditional rejection of violence makes you smugly think of yourselves as noble, as enlightened, but in reality it is nothing less than abject moral capitulation to evil. Unconditional rejection of self-defense, because you think its a supposed surrender to violence, leaves you no resort but begging for mercy or offering appeasement.

-Terry Goodkind


Sex Panther cologne -- 50 percent of the time, it works every time.

-Anchorman

The best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago. The second best time is now.

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#9 Ice Man

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Posted 18 June 2005 - 12:54 PM

No, I don't but the players know and have objected to the accounting procedure.

Can you explain why someone would buy a team that has loss as high as most hockey team if there wasn't another financial benefit or accounting procedures that allow losses to be created while other profit count elsewhere.
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#10 Don

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Posted 18 June 2005 - 01:06 PM

I'm still completely lost. Utterly and completely lost.

- According to Ice Man. the teams are not reporting all revenue and therefore are posting losses.
- However Ice Man started this thread by stating that the Blues and their building have lost $255M since 1994 saying that this was "telling". What exactly does it TELL?!? That they hid $255M worth of revenue and actually they are making hoards of profit?

People buy money losing businesses all the time with hopes of turning them around. Sometimes, like in Vancouver, they do turn around. Sometimes, like St. Louis, they don't. It says right in the article that his plan to turn things around including purchasing the Grizzlies. He knew they were losing money fast but still he jumped on board because he had a business plan... one that fell through, but a plan none-the-less.

Maybe a businessman about to inherit Walmart needs a business that losses money FASTER for a bigger tax write-off. With the new CBA the Blues just won't lose enough money to be a viable tax shelter. :rolleyes:
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#11 Ice Man

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Posted 18 June 2005 - 02:20 PM

Don, I started this thread that correct. I copied the exact acticle as written by someone else along with the URL address. However Don, you are not correct with anything else you said I said in the original thread as I post nothing in the original thread message.

Are you reading something into these post so you can argue with yourself?
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#12 Devils731

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Posted 18 June 2005 - 03:14 PM

No, I don't but the players know and have objected to the accounting procedure.

Can you explain why someone would buy a team that has loss as high as most hockey team if there wasn't another financial benefit or accounting procedures that allow losses to be created while other profit count elsewhere.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Yes I can. The new CBA will allow owners to field competitive teams whose cost don't outstrip revenues. The new owner I'm sure will disagree that the team will continue to operate at a loss.
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Your unconditional rejection of violence makes you smugly think of yourselves as noble, as enlightened, but in reality it is nothing less than abject moral capitulation to evil. Unconditional rejection of self-defense, because you think its a supposed surrender to violence, leaves you no resort but begging for mercy or offering appeasement.

-Terry Goodkind


Sex Panther cologne -- 50 percent of the time, it works every time.

-Anchorman

The best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago. The second best time is now.

-Anonymous

Keeper of Section 212-213's wayward step

#13 Don

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Posted 18 June 2005 - 03:53 PM

Don, I started this thread that correct. I copied the exact acticle as written by someone else along with the URL address.  However Don, you are not correct with anything else you said I said in the original thread as I post nothing in the original thread message.

Are you reading something into these post so you can argue with yourself?


Err.... you put the secondary comment on the title that reads "Speaks Volumes". "Telling"; "Speaks volumes" - po-TAY-to po-TAH-to (but no e) - (sees if RD gets rid of that one :))

If you would like me to rephrase:

However Ice Man started this thread by stating that the Blues and their building have lost $255M since 1994 saying that this "spoke volumes". What exactly does it "SPEAK VOLUMES ABOUT"?!? That they hid $255M worth of revenue and actually they are making hoards of profit?
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#14 Ice Man

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Posted 18 June 2005 - 05:55 PM

Don, hockey sports writer and business financial writer are writing about the trouble the owners will be in financially with the end of the lockout coming soon. and a new season starting. I don't expect this trouble to remain forever but it will be there when the season start for at least the first and maybe the second season. You should know what that will mean regarding fan base and revenues.

I see you avoided my offer for a bet.
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#15 RowdyFan42

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Posted 18 June 2005 - 08:48 PM

I see you avoided my offer for a bet.

I think he's still waiting for you to sell all of your belongings and send him the proceeds.
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#16 Darwindog

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Posted 20 June 2005 - 12:38 PM

OK who here thinks GR is stubbs grandpappy?
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....boy last year at this time I was kicking myself for not saying hi to Stevens. Or looking at him but I did say thanks anyhow :urg: man and he was all hot and stuff -- he was the picture of my favorite picture even..

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