Potential Buffalo Bills Owners: An Update

With the Buffalo Bills worth a Forbes Valuation estimated at $870 Million here are the current front runners who submitted bids starting Wednesday July 30th, 2014 starting over $1 Billion:

Terry Pegula - The Herd Report.jpg

Terry Pegula 

The Latest Buffalo Bills Bid Update:

Toronto Sun reports that Pegula bid $1.3 Billion for the Bills on Wednesday. This is currently the highest bid for the Bills at this time. 


Owner Background:

Before buying the Sabres, Pegula made a fortune in fracking, selling his natural gas and drilling company to Royal Dutch Shell for $4.7 billion. He’s publicly stated that he wants to see the Bills stay in Buffalo.

The NFL cross-ownership rules don’t apply when the teams are in the same market, so Pegula could technically own both the Bills and the Sabres (and thus our hearts). Delaware North magnate and Boston Bruins owner Jeremy Jacobs has expressed interest in buying the Bills, but in contrast to Pegula, he’d have to sell the Bruins before being considered an eligible buyer (and since he hasn’t done that, he’s no longer in the mix).

The Buffalo News reported that Pegula has been dumping off assets and reorganizing his holdings, including selling $1.75 billion worth of drilling land in Ohio and West Virginia earlier this year. This may have been done to free up money so he could buy the Bills.

Forbes estimates Pagula’s net worth at $3.3 billion.

Donald Trump - The Herd Report.jpg

Donald Trump

The Latest Buffalo Bills Bid Update:

“I put in a bid in which the team would absolutely be kept in Buffalo,” Trump told The New York Post this week. Trump's bid is undisclosed at this time and he has stated that he will not be rash or "stupid" just to make the team his, indicating he will not over bid for the team. 


Owner Background:

The Donald has been continually gracing the Bills organization with his interest. In April Trump said of buying the Bills, “I would love to do it, and if I can do it I'm keeping [the team] in Buffalo. I live in New York, and it's easier for me to go to Buffalo than any other place.”

Given Trump’s penchant for shameless self-promotion and publicity stunts, it’s hard to take anything he says terribly seriously. But there’s still a chance he’s a legitimate contender—he’s got the bankroll, and the NFL is as sound (and as glamorous) of an investment as they come. Trump’s the richest potential buyer.

His net worth is estimated conservatively at $3.9 billion.

Jon Bon Jovi - The Herd Report.jpg

Jon Bon Jovi

The Latest Buffalo Bills Bid Update:

Jon Bon Jovi and Larry Tanenbaum, the chairman of Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment (which owns the NBA Toronto Raptors and the NHL Maple Leafs) along with the Rogers family (which controls Rogers Communications) submitted an undisclosed bid on Wednesday. Rumour's place the group and Jon Bon Jovi's bid for the Buffalo Bills around $1.2 Billion. There currently is a Bon Jovi boycott movement in Buffalo, N.Y as the group would most likely move the team to Toronto if there bid won.

Owner Background:

It’s amazing how much money some hyper-successful entertainers are making. Dr. Dre is now a billionaire after selling Beats to Apple, and Bon Jovi is worth hundreds of millions of dollars—enough for him to be at the head of a group of Canadian investors who would buy the Bills as a block. This group includes Larry Tanenbaum, who’s in charge of the firm that owns the Toronto Raptors and Maple Leafs. The New York Post reported that Bon Jovi recently had lunch with Commissioner Goodell to discuss ownership.

This is the one buying situation where the potential owners would almost certainly try to move the Bills (probably to Toronto)—so we have to be rooting against Jon Bon J.

Jon Bon Jovi's estimated net worth is $300 million. 

Tom Golisano - The Herd Report.jpg

Tom Golisano 

The Latest Buffalo Bills Bid Update:

Golisano did not submit a bid yet for the Buffalo Bills. It is reported that he could contact Morgan Stanley later this week to submit a bid. Golisano appears to be waiting to see the initial bids and the landscape of the offerings before submitting his own. Many predict he will ask Morgan Stanley what they would like him to bid later in this round. Tom Golisano is worth $1.9 billion.




Owner Background:

It’s speculated that Golisano sold the Sabres so he’d have enough money to buy the Bills. He’s expressed his desire for the team to stay in Buffalo, calling it “a very important asset” for Western NY. Golisano has also been supportive of building a new stadium, and even indicated plans for a dome.

Golisano is connected to mall-developer Scott Congel, whose Pyramid Companies control the Walden Galleria and Destiny USA in Syracuse. Congel owns land 10 miles from Ralph Wilson Stadium—land that’s been discussed as a potential site for a new stadium.

Golisano is worth $1.9 billion.

The $1.1 billion sale of the Miami Dolphins in 2008 is the highest price ever paid for an NFL team. It will be up to Morgan Stanley to determine who makes it to the next round of bidding in the next few weeks.