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Finance

$6bn NFL record sale “agreed” for Washington Commanders

Washington Commanders is set to change hands for an NFL record price of $6.05bn after a deal was agreed between the current owners and a group led by Philadelphia 76ers’ Josh Harris.

Commanders owner Dan Snyder, who took over the team in 1999, retained Bank of America Securities in November 2022 to explore a potential sale. A report on NFL Network Insider said the sale is not final nor signed and no agreement has been sent to the league for approval, but a finalised sale is expected if all goes well.

Harris, who co-owns the NBA’s 76ers and NHL’s New Jersey Devils and is currently a minority owner of the Pittsburgh Steelers, is the head of an investment group that includes Maryland businessman Mitchell Rales and NBA icon Magic Johnson.

The proposed sale comes as the Commanders, who have a contract to play at FedExField in Maryland until September 2027, continue to explore options for a new home. Virginia, Maryland and the District of Columbia have all been linked as potential locations.

Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin earlier this year said he is ready to enter talks over a new stadium with potential new owners.

Any sale of an NFL franchise would need to be approved by the NFL’s finance committee and at least 24 of the league’s 32 owners. That could be sought when the owners next meet in Minneapolis in May.

The expected $6.05 billion sale price of the Commanders would be the highest in NFL history. Last year, the Denver Broncos were sold to the Walton-Penner group for a then-record $4.65 billion.