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Milwaukee Bucks Billionaire Sells Stake for Record $3.5 Billion in Valuation Deal

According to various media outlets, billionaire investor Marc Lasry has agreed to sell his 25% stake in the Milwaukee Bucks to Jimmy and Dee Haslam, owners of the Cleveland Browns. While the sale is still pending approval by the National Basketball Association and its owners, the valuation of the team is reportedly around $3.5 billion.

Lasry, who is the CEO of Avenue Capital Group, acquired the Bucks in 2014 for approximately $550 million alongside Fortress Investment Group Co-CEO Wes Edens. Since then, the team has seen significant success, appearing in two Eastern Conference finals and winning an NBA championship in 2021. If the deal for Lasry's stake goes through, it would represent a more than sixfold increase in his initial investment from nine years ago.

The sale of the Bucks comes at a time when NBA teams are becoming increasingly attractive targets for investors. In December of last year, Mat Ishiba, CEO of United Wholesale Mortgage, reached a deal to acquire a majority stake in the Phoenix Suns and the WNBA's Phoenix Mercury, valuing the teams at $4 billion.

According to Bloomberg data, a valuation of $3.5 billion for the Bucks would rank among the highest ever for a US sports franchise. The Denver Broncos sold for $4.65 billion last year, while the New York Mets changed hands for $2.4 billion in 2020.

In addition to the Bucks sale, the source also revealed that Lasry is in talks to build a sports investment fund that would seek to acquire stakes in professional teams, as well as businesses related to sports betting and media rights.

A spokesperson for Lasry declined to comment on the matter, as did representatives for the Haslam family and Avenue Capital. ESPN had reported earlier on Monday that Lasry had secured a deal.


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