PDA

View Full Version : Teachers Won't sell MLSE



KGH
11-25-2011, 09:25 AM
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/teachers-wont-sell-mlse/article2249112/

The Ontario Teachersí Pension Plan has decided not to sell its stake in Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment Ltd., according to sources.

The pension plan has wrapped up an eight-month process during which it explored its options and has concluded that it wants to hold onto its 79.5-per-cent stake in MLSE.

Teachersí received and considered numerous offers for the sports franchise, sources said. But the pension fund is excited about the prospects for both the teams and the company. And it believes it can take actions that will help the Toronto Maple Leafs perform better, sources suggested.

Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment Ltd., which has more than 600 full-time and 3,000 part-time employees, owns the Toronto Maple Leafs, Toronto Raptors, Toronto FC, Toronto Marlies, Air Canada Centre and Maple Leaf Square, in addition to numerous TV assets and websites.
The Ontario Teachersí Pension Plan first became involved with the sports franchise in 1994, when it invested in the Leafs. In 2003, it bolstered its ownership to 66 per cent of MLSE.

Teachersí decided to put its stake on the block in March of this year to see how much it might fetch, after the pension plan received expressions of interest from potential acquirers. But Teachersí had always said that it would simply hold onto its stake if the ultimate bids didnít live up to its expectations.

In May, Teachersí struck a deal to buy Toronto-Dominion Bankís 13.46-per-cent stake in MLSE, a move that gave the pension plan more control over the auction process.

CSO_BBTB
11-25-2011, 09:32 AM
Tend to think it's a case of better the devil you know from a soccer standpoint. The commitment they've made to the new facility at Downsview might not have been on the agenda of another ownership group.

ManUtd4ever
11-25-2011, 10:00 AM
Wow, definitely an unexpected development.

As a Toronto sports fan, I have had no qualms with the OTPP having the majority stake in MLSE, as significant financial resources have been allocated to the Leafs, Raptors, and TFC throughout their tenure as primary shareholders.

Roogsy
11-25-2011, 10:01 AM
In other words, the offers weren't as good as they had hoped.

ManUtd4ever
11-25-2011, 10:08 AM
In other words, the offers weren't as good as they had hoped.

Yes, that too. The percieved value of MLSE sports properties that was established by the OTPP was inflated and unrealistic throughout the entire process.

ensco
11-25-2011, 10:09 AM
In other words, the offers weren't as good as they had hoped.

Or they couldn't sort out the Mexican standoff with Larry. (Or both.)

Pretty dumb to go into a sale process and not control the sale.

Roogsy
11-25-2011, 10:12 AM
Or they couldn't sort out the Mexican standoff with Larry. (Or both.)

Pretty dumb to go into a sale process and not control the sale.

Now they own even more of MLSE (having bought the TD portion) and will have to hang on. Of course, the face they put forward is that they are happy to hang on to the asset, my guess is that they are less than enthused this process did not go their way.

KGH
11-25-2011, 10:12 AM
In other words, the offers weren't as good as they had hoped.

Well no wonder:

Leafs - Corporate sales have been steadily declining and will continue as the corporations continue to decrease the amount of money they spend on sports tickets.

Raptors - If there was a season going on you'd see a half empty arena most nights.

Marlies - They can't give tickets away.

TFC - Well we all know where we are.

TFCRegina
11-25-2011, 01:53 PM
Well no wonder:

Leafs - Corporate sales have been steadily declining and will continue as the corporations continue to decrease the amount of money they spend on sports tickets.

Raptors - If there was a season going on you'd see a half empty arena most nights.

Marlies - They can't give tickets away.

TFC - Well we all know where we are.

Sitting at Keyboards discussing the team? :D

Beach_Red
11-25-2011, 02:09 PM
Wow, definitely an unexpected development.

As a Toronto sports fan, I have had no qualms with the OTPP having the majority stake in MLSE, as significant financial resources have been allocated to the Leafs, Raptors, and TFC throughout their tenure as primary shareholders.

Well sure, in salary-cap leagues they invest about the middle of the pack (maybe upper end of the pack sometimes). So the problems must just be the people they put (and leave) in charge. Peddie is out very soon, does Anselmi take over now?

ag futbol
11-25-2011, 02:16 PM
egg on face

Looks good on them



Leafs - Corporate sales have been steadily declining and will continue as the corporations continue to decrease the amount of money they spend on sports tickets.

Under publicized, but true. MLSE has increasingly been marketing their corporate seats lately and demand has apparently softened. A lot of businesses I know have downgraded their tickets from the luxury box section to the upper half of the lower bowl. I don't know if it's a function of years and years of bad results or a soft economy.

billyfly
11-25-2011, 02:18 PM
MLSE ain't cheap.

boban
11-25-2011, 02:48 PM
In other words, the offers weren't as good as they had hoped.
In other words the holding company (MLSE) is woefully overvalued.

Brooker
11-25-2011, 02:49 PM
What happened to the supporters buying it? :D

boban
11-25-2011, 02:49 PM
Wow, definitely an unexpected development.

As a Toronto sports fan, I have had no qualms with the OTPP having the majority stake in MLSE, as significant financial resources have been allocated to the Leafs, Raptors, and TFC throughout their tenure as primary shareholders.
How is it unexpected? Everyone that was thought to be a potential buyer walked away.

And the other part you mentioned .. well I'm guessing you like their koolaid.

TFC/Everton
11-25-2011, 02:50 PM
There is nothing I hate more than supporting a team that is owned by the god awful teachers union. Yet, here I am...

boban
11-25-2011, 02:53 PM
MLSE ain't cheap.
The value of the company or how they spend their money?

ManUtd4ever
11-25-2011, 03:54 PM
How is it unexpected? Everyone that was thought to be a potential buyer walked away.

And the other part you mentioned .. well I'm guessing you like their koolaid.

It's unexpected in the sense that it appeared as though the OTPP was intent on selling their majority stake in MLSE to the highest bidder as opposed to just testing the waters.

As for your second comment, it's not even up for debate. One can question the wisdom of of MLSE regarding their use of financial resources in the past (ie. managerial choices), but there is absolutely no question that the Leafs, Raptors, and TFC are among the highest spending clubs within their respective leagues with respect to investment in infrastucture, front office staff, and team payroll.

I recognize that the expenditures should be in a higher bracket than most other clubs and correlate to MLSE's revenues and exorbitant ticket prices, but the fact remains that Brian Burke, Bryan Colangelo, and Tom Anselmi have no shortage of financial resources available to them in their quest to assemble winning teams.

boban
11-25-2011, 04:05 PM
It's unexpected in the sense that it appeared as though the OTPP was intent on selling their majority stake in MLSE to the highest bidder as opposed to just testing the waters.

As for your second comment, it's not even up for debate. One can question the wisdom of of MLSE regarding their use of financial resources in the past (ie. managerial choices), but there is absolutely no question that the Leafs, Raptors, and TFC are among the highest spending clubs within their respective leagues with respect to investment in infrastucture, front office staff, and team payroll.

I recognize that the expenditures should be in higher bracket than most other clubs and correlate to MLSE's revenues and exorbitant ticket prices, but the fact remains that Brian Burke, Bryan Colangelo, and Tom Anselmi have no shortage of financial resources available to them in their quest to assemble winning teams.
We can see what their intentions were now. It was only intentional on their terms, no one else's.

Shakes McQueen
11-25-2011, 05:11 PM
Now they own even more of MLSE (having bought the TD portion) and will have to hang on. Of course, the face they put forward is that they are happy to hang on to the asset, my guess is that they are less than enthused this process did not go their way.

Yep. They wanted to cash out big on a plateauing (albeit financially safe) asset, and for some reason nobody bit, haha.

So you put on the corporate happy face, talk about how pleased you are to hang onto the asset, and curse in private.

- Scott

Shakes McQueen
11-25-2011, 05:13 PM
We can see what their intentions were now. It was only intentional on their terms, no one else's.

You say this as though it's a position we should hold against them.

- Scott

Belfast_Boy
11-25-2011, 05:20 PM
Now they are going to take action to make the leafs better? Geeee thanks for all the years of making money and doing nothing.

ensco
11-25-2011, 05:38 PM
there is absolutely no question that the Leafs, Raptors, and TFC are among the highest spending clubs within their respective leagues with respect to investment in infrastucture, front office staff, and team payroll.


Only sort of true for TFC, and definitely not true for the Raptors.

They didn't really become "one of the highest spending teams in the league" until this past summer. The spend was defensive in nature (save the SSH base) as opposed to an attempt to win.

Re the Raps, you have to spend past the cap to compete in the NBA, it's not much of a discussion. They never have.

Roogsy
11-25-2011, 05:51 PM
Only sort of true for TFC, and definitely not true for the Raptors.

They didn't really become "one of the highest spending teams in the league" until this past summer. The spend was defensive in nature (save the SSH base) as opposed to an attempt to win.

Re the Raps, you have to spend past the cap to compete in the NBA, it's not much of a discussion. They never have.

Are you sure about the Raps? I vaguely recall there being a period where they were spending beyond the cap but I'm not sure.

ag futbol
11-25-2011, 06:00 PM
When Babcock went out and signed Antonio Davis, and a bunch of other guys in anticipation of a deep playoff run we were a top 6 team in terms of spending. That represented a peak.

Since that time, it has gone down further and further. Maybe they are waiting for the right moment to splash the cash, but their commitment level looks low.

As of right now, the raptors are in the bottom third of the league when it comes to spending. I have a hard time remembering the last time we splashed for a serious free agent. The team seems content to try and overpay for lower level free agents and meddling talent.

ManUtd4ever
11-25-2011, 06:31 PM
Only sort of true for TFC, and definitely not true for the Raptors.

They didn't really become "one of the highest spending teams in the league" until this past summer. The spend was defensive in nature (save the SSH base) as opposed to an attempt to win.

Re the Raps, you have to spend past the cap to compete in the NBA, it's not much of a discussion. They never have.


When Babcock went out and signed Antonio Davis, and a bunch of other guys in anticipation of a deep playoff run we were a top 6 team in terms of spending. That represented a peak.

Since that time, it has gone down further and further. Maybe they are waiting for the right moment to splash the cash, but their commitment level looks low.

As of right now, the raptors are in the bottom third of the league when it comes to spending. I have a hard time remembering the last time we splashed for a serious free agent. The team seems content to try and overpay for lower level free agents and meddling talent.

I agree that the team payroll has slipped into the mid range of the NBA in recent years, but Colangelo has stated in the past that the Board Of Governors at MLSE was willing to make the funds available to become a luxury tax team, if he felt that they were close to being a contender. As for the Raps expanded front office, I'm sure the salaries are up there with the top teams in the league.

Shakes McQueen
11-25-2011, 07:14 PM
When Babcock went out and signed Antonio Davis, and a bunch of other guys in anticipation of a deep playoff run we were a top 6 team in terms of spending. That represented a peak.

Since that time, it has gone down further and further. Maybe they are waiting for the right moment to splash the cash, but their commitment level looks low.

As of right now, the raptors are in the bottom third of the league when it comes to spending. I have a hard time remembering the last time we splashed for a serious free agent. The team seems content to try and overpay for lower level free agents and meddling talent.

I know Colangelo had spoken about the team's willingness to go over the cap the next year, when Bosh was in his last season with the Raps. Supposedly it was part of his pitch to Bosh, when they were trying to hang onto him.

Right now the Raps have no real marquee player to build around, so it doesn't make much sense to be a luxury tax team - and basketball is probably the worst sport when it comes to trying to woo big-name American players to play in Canada. It's part of the reason why they tried to play up the "international-ness" of the team - because those were the easiest players to convince to play in Toronto.

It's hard to know what the Raps would be willing or authorized to spend, because they've rarely been in the right position to become a luxury tax team. Even the Blue Jays, who are the toast of the town right now (and are under a different owner), have expressed that they are only going to substantially increase payroll when they think the time is right.

- Scott

ensco
11-25-2011, 09:05 PM
Without wading too far into something that has consumed about 167,000 pages over at raptorsforum.com....

Roogsy/ManU4ever, you're right (or at least have a point), they did pay the tax for a couple of years, in the prime VC years, and I think they have paid a tiny bit in a couple of other years more recently (ie after they brought Turkuglu in). With Bosh on max dollars, it was almost impossible not to. But there's degrees of "paying the tax"... and I know many felt they weren't really willing to go after the major piece that would make them an elite team with Bosh.

I would also say that the large majority of Raptors hardcores don't find Colangelo's current statements, about MLSE's willingness to have the Raps become a luxury tax team, to be credible.

ag futbol
11-25-2011, 09:17 PM
Right now the Raps have no real marquee player to build around, so it doesn't make much sense to be a luxury tax team - and basketball is probably the worst sport when it comes to trying to woo big-name American players to play in Canada. It's part of the reason why they tried to play up the "international-ness" of the team - because those were the easiest players to convince to play in Toronto.

I don’t buy into the international aspect of the story. We had some high-profile rejections in the early days and there are still some thickheads around but generally it’s not a factor. Toronto consistently shows up in the top 3 places players like to stop-over in the course of the season, enough so that they deemed it “white-vegas”. Guys know it’s different, but they can appreciate it as well. The main problem with coming to this city is that the organization is not perceived as serious about winning, I kid you not. It’s seen as a good place for a talented rookie to establish himself and then skip town.


I agree that the team payroll has slipped into the mid range of the NBA in recent years, but Colangelo has stated in the past that the Board Of Governors at MLSE was willing to make the funds available to become a luxury tax team, if he felt that they were close to being a contender. As for the Raps expanded front office, I'm sure the salaries are up there with the top teams in the league.
Colangelo is being a good company guy by stating that, but at the same time I doubt it. I've heard past statements of a similar nature and they completely flip-flopped when it came to opening up the piggy-bank.

The other issue with that statement is the team needs to be spending into the luxury tax to cement a playoff spot year-over-year. The way they've laid their budget out they've basically eliminated the possibility of competing with any of the top six teams in the east because they are heavy luxury tax spenders. So effectively we're trying to win a prize fight with one arm tied behind our back and the corner is saying "if you knock him out I'll toss you some water". Well... thanks

Shakes McQueen
11-25-2011, 11:59 PM
I donít buy into the international aspect of the story. We had some high-profile rejections in the early days and there are still some thickheads around but generally itís not a factor. Toronto consistently shows up in the top 3 places players like to stop-over in the course of the season, enough so that they deemed it ďwhite-vegasĒ. Guys know itís different, but they can appreciate it as well. The main problem with coming to this city is that the organization is not perceived as serious about winning, I kid you not. Itís seen as a good place for a talented rookie to establish himself and then skip town.

But being a place a top NBA player wants to play all season for several years, isn't the same as being a stop-over party town for a night here or there.

- Scott

james
11-26-2011, 08:14 AM
i dont know what would work out best for us, teachers still owning MLSE or having a new billionaire comming in and running the show. Depends of the new billionaire would really give a shit about the fans or not. And if they could actually change things around to produce a winner! Who knows tho.

ensco
11-26-2011, 09:45 AM
Somebody is peddling the story that at the end there was a failed joint bid by BCE-Rogers....I find it hard to believe that there was a serious possibility of success for this. The whole point of owning something, if you are the distributor, is exclusivity. Otherwise you may as well just rent it. This feels more like message sending on behalf of both BCE and Rogers about price.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/teachers-wont-sell-mlse/article2249112/

Teachers have tremendous egg on their faces here, and not because of the price negotiations. The ask was high, but that's OK. As JP Morgan said: "Prices will fluctuate".

But it was always way too complicated, with the Tanenbaum ROFR in place. They had to know that they have to resolve the Tanenbaum thing first. Teachers have convulsed the whole MLSE organization, and wasted a tremendous amount of time and energy, for nothing. Jesus, I mean my 5 year old knows that she can't sell something that isn't hers to sell. It is truly astonishing.

I hope someone in a governance/oversight position at OTTP cares.

Roogsy
11-26-2011, 10:46 AM
Having dealt with OTPP in the past it does seem they have become a cumbersome organization with too many cooks in the kitchen.

Add to that the additional layer of MLSE bureaucracy and you have an enormous level of dysfunction.

boban
11-26-2011, 10:46 AM
i dont know what would work out best for us, teachers still owning MLSE or having a new billionaire comming in and running the show. Depends of the new billionaire would really give a shit about the fans or not. And if they could actually change things around to produce a winner! Who knows tho.
Well you had almost 20 years of OTTP ownership in MLSE and you still question if we would be better off with another owner??!! I mean how bad do things have to get for you to want change?!

boban
11-26-2011, 10:47 AM
You say this as though it's a position we should hold against them.

- Scott
uhhhhh Yaaah.

boban
11-26-2011, 10:51 AM
Only sort of true for TFC, and definitely not true for the Raptors.

They didn't really become "one of the highest spending teams in the league" until this past summer. The spend was defensive in nature (save the SSH base) as opposed to an attempt to win.

Re the Raps, you have to spend past the cap to compete in the NBA, it's not much of a discussion. They never have.
Even then esco, their DP investments are not the knock your socks off like LA and NY. They never will. Don't get me wrong, I love Dany and Thornsten and they fit great from all we can see, but MLSE will never splash the cash for its players to be at the very top of the league.

boban
11-26-2011, 10:53 AM
When Babcock went out and signed Antonio Davis, and a bunch of other guys in anticipation of a deep playoff run we were a top 6 team in terms of spending. That represented a peak.

Since that time, it has gone down further and further. Maybe they are waiting for the right moment to splash the cash, but their commitment level looks low.

As of right now, the raptors are in the bottom third of the league when it comes to spending. I have a hard time remembering the last time we splashed for a serious free agent. The team seems content to try and overpay for lower level free agents and meddling talent.
That wasn't Babcock .. Grunwald.

ManUtd4ever
11-26-2011, 10:58 AM
Well you had almost 20 years of OTTP ownership in MLSE and you still question if we would be better off with another owner??!! I mean how bad do things have to get for you to want change?!

There is no question that bureaucracy runs deep within the OTPP. I just don't think that has as much of an influence on Leafs/Raps/TFC management as you have implied.

Burke, Colangelo, and Winter/Mariner have complete autonomy in their respective positions, and they have been allocated the financial resources (for the most part) to field contending teams.

The recent years of futility for Toronto sports teams has eveything to do with poor managerial decisions, not necessarily ownership.

NBS
11-26-2011, 11:12 AM
There is no question that bureaucracy runs deep within the OTPP. I just don't think that has as much of an influence on Leafs/Raps/TFC management as you have implied.

Burke, Colangelo, and Winter/Mariner have complete autonomy in their respective positions, and they have been allocated the financial resources (for the most part) to field contending teams.

The recent years of futility for Toronto sports teams has eveything to do with poor managerial decisions, not necessarily ownership.

Exactly. I've never questioned the willingness to spend either. The idea that they don't care or dont' want to win is such a crock.

The only team you can question is the Raps, but they have not been in a position to 'go for it', so it's difficult to judge them here. The only legit championship caliber stars they had (or at least it looked that way at the time) were Carter and T-Mac, and if they had stayed together, there isn't much doubt in my mind MLSE would've spent over the cap to go all the way.

They want to win, and are willing to spend, it just hasn't worked out for them yet.

boban
11-26-2011, 11:14 AM
The recent years of futility for Toronto sports teams has eveything to do with poor managerial decisions, not necessarily ownership.
You got to be fuckin kidding me!! What the fuck was that whole Quinn fiasco few years back? Or the hiring of Ferguson? Babcock? Had ownership written all over it!! So much so that the league got involved to right the various ships under MLSE.
And now everyone talks about some investments in the soccer facility, DP's at TFC, Burke with the Leafs, and Coangelo with the Raptors as if that corrects years and years of incompetence. So they'll improve the teams they have a bit. They make the playoffs. Ok. The city will be high as a kite for just making the playoffs and think Stanley is coming to town. But we know it won't, they'll slip back down and we start this process of giving the another chance. Fuck that I say. This ownership group has no clue to build championship teams. I'm not interested din their bottom line!!

ag futbol
11-26-2011, 11:53 AM
But being a place a top NBA player wants to play all season for several years, isn't the same as being a stop-over party town for a night here or there.

- Scott
it is different, but overall this is the "nobody wants to play for TFC because of fieldturf" excuse. The organization should more than be able to get by.




That wasn't Babcock .. Grunwald.
Whoops .. yep I messed that one up.

Beach_Red
11-26-2011, 12:04 PM
There is no question that bureaucracy runs deep within the OTPP. I just don't think that has as much of an influence on Leafs/Raps/TFC management as you have implied.

Burke, Colangelo, and Winter/Mariner have complete autonomy in their respective positions, and they have been allocated the financial resources (for the most part) to field contending teams.

The recent years of futility for Toronto sports teams has eveything to do with poor managerial decisions, not necessarily ownership.

Are you sure the bureaucracy isn't a problem? Are you sure Winter/Mariner had complete autonomy the day they took the jobs? It would be unprecedented for office politics to have not been a factor. Sports is an industry with tremendous turnover in management and people constantly manouvering for their next job.

The bureaucracy is the main reason the teams are in the shape they are.

ag futbol
11-26-2011, 12:05 PM
Burke, Colangelo, and Winter/Mariner have complete autonomy in their respective positions, and they have been allocated the financial resources (for the most part) to field contending teams.

This is a line fed to you by the organization but it's not necessarily true. Major expenses (signings) are approved by the board, that's a major downfall of the autonomy of the GM.

Colanglo was being privately questioned by a member of the board about a year ago who is a career chartered accountant. It's reported he called BC's entire career a product of nepotism. This same guy sits on the board and will vote on approval of expenditures.

That's incredibly dysfunctional to have some bean-counter with no knowledge of basketball standing up and voicing such opinions. Thus is the problem with ownership, they are too stubborn to step away from a subject they know little to nothing about.

And don't even get me started on Richard Peddie, the NBA actually produced a consulting report that said the raptors needed to ban him from the lockerroom because he was driving the players bat-shit crazy.

ensco
11-26-2011, 12:34 PM
This is a line fed to you by the organization but it's not necessarily true. Major expenses (signings) are approved by the board, that's a major downfall of the autonomy of the GM.

Colanglo was being privately questioned by a member of the board about a year ago who is a career chartered accountant. It's reported he called BC's entire career a product of nepotism. This same guy sits on the board and will vote on approval of expenditures.

That's incredibly dysfunctional to have some bean-counter with no knowledge of basketball standing up and voicing such opinions. Thus is the problem with ownership, they are too stubborn to step away from a subject they know little to nothing about.

And don't even get me started on Richard Peddie, the NBA actually produced a consulting report that said the raptors needed to ban him from the lockerroom because he was driving the players bat-shit crazy.

That is good stuff. Love the Peddie story. Makes sense to me.

Who cares whether Peddie or Anselmi "want to win". Of course they do. So what.

Bad management can always be fixed. But not here.

The fault lies with Teachers, right from the beginning. They allowed Peddie to become an out-of-control monster with no accountability, because they have always been afraid of the responsibility (and the bad press) that goes with calling the shots. Tanenbaum made it exponentially worse by exploiting Teachers' incompetence/passivity to (i) earn himself a huge role his small shareholding didn't entitle him to (his meddling with Domi and Carter are legendary), and (ii) further wreck the governance (as exemplified by this train wreck of a sale process).

In theory I would be worried about my job if I had managed the MLSE investment for Teachers. But nobody involved ever has to pay the piper, because it might shed sunlight on the whole sorry mess if they did.

Shakes McQueen
11-27-2011, 04:59 PM
uhhhhh Yaaah.

We should hold it against them that they only wanted to sell their share of MLSE on their terms?

As far as criticisms of MLSE or OTPP go, that's straining it.

- Scott

boban
11-27-2011, 05:32 PM
We should hold it against them that they only wanted to sell their share of MLSE on their terms?

As far as criticisms of MLSE or OTPP go, that's straining it.

- Scott
As far as price goes they were just jerking everyone's chain.
That's not straining it.

Pookie
11-27-2011, 06:03 PM
Before folks consider that the current ownership will last forever consider the following truths.

- OTPP were open to selling their shares
- A major media empire was interested in buying
- Selling MLSE would net OTPP a hefty profit
- Acquiring MLSE would net a media empire coveted content

While the deal is supposedly "dead" at this point those driving factors will pull both sides back to the table in the future.