Wed. Feb 28th, 2024


Billionaire John Henry expanded his booming sports portfolio Wednesday when a consortium led by his Fenway Sports Group—the owner of the Boston Red Sox, Pittsburgh Penguins and Premier League club Liverpool—struck a $3 billion partnership with the PGA Tour, a major deal that gives the consortium a minority share in a new PGA company and allows pro golfers to hold ownership stakes.

John Henry’s Fenway Sports Group struck a major deal with the PGA Tour.Getty Images

Key Facts

The Strategic Sports Group, a consortium of professional sports owners controlled by Henry’s Fenway Sports Group, agreed to acquire a minority share in PGA Tour Enterprises, a commercial branch under the umbrella of the pro golf organization, the PGA Tour announced.

The agreement also gives nearly 200 PGA Tour players the opportunity to receive more than $1.5 billion in equity, collectively, in PGA Tour Enterprises, with equity based on members’ “career accomplishments, recent achievements, future participation and services,” according to the PGA Tour.

Strategic Sports Group will invest $1.5 billion into PGA Tour Enterprises up front, the PGA Tour said, and will “provide strategic focus on maximizing revenue generation.”

Key Background

The PGA Tour, a dominant tour within professional golf, had been embroiled in a months-long rivalry with Saudi-backed LIV Golf, a golf tour that broke onto the scene in 2022. Facing the unprecedented threat of a heavily funded new competitor, the PGA Tour banned its members from competing in LIV events, leading to the suspension of stars including Dustin Johnson, Bryson DeChambeau and Phil Mickelson—the latter two went on to sue the PGA Tour in August 2022 for alleged antitrust violations. The souring rivalry seemed to come to a sudden and unexpected close last June, when the two tours signed an agreement combining their commercial businesses into a new for-profit company with PGA control on a new board, while ending all pending litigation between PGA and LIV. The Saudi Arabian Public Investment Fund held the “exclusive right to further invest in the new entity” under the agreement

Forbes Valuation

We estimate John Henry’s net worth at roughly $5.1 billion, making the Fenway Sports Group co-founder and Boston Globe principal owner the world’s 561th-richest person. Henry, who purchased the Red Sox with business partner Tom Werner for $380 million in 2002, also has a stake in Premier League club Liverpool and has a majority stake through the Fenway Sports Group in the Boston-based regional sports network New England Sports Network (NESN) and stock car organization Roush Fenway Keselowski Racing.

Further Reading

PGA Tour And Saudi-Backed LIV Golf Agree To Sudden Merger (Forbes)

Fenway Sports Group-backed consortium strikes $3 billion deal with PGA Tour (Boston Globe)

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I am a Boston-based reporter. Before joining Forbes, I covered the environment, local government and the arts for a small-town newspaper on Nantucket. My previous work includes NPR, WBUR, WCAI and Nantucket Today. I am a graduate of the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, with a degree in political science. Email me at

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