Current Padres limited partner Ron Fowler is also investing in the deal.
The Padres' senior vice president of public affairs, Sarah Farnsworth, confirmed the deal after the team's 2-0 victory against the Chicago Cubs Monday night, Aug. 6. Farnsworth said a final agreement has been reached but must still be approved by MLB owners.
The deal marks the second time in three years the Padres have attempted to sell. In 2009, former Arizona Diamondbacks CEO Jeff Moorad had a deal in place to buy majority control of the team from John Moores for close to $500 million. Moorad had a five-year window to buy 100% of the Padres. However, Moorad withdrew his buyout application from MLB in 2010 because the league had doubts over the financing of his proposal.
As a result, the Padres hired Allen & Co.'s Steve Greenberg and Moag & Co. earlier this year to relaunch an auction process.
The Padres sale comes about four months after Frank McCourt reached an agreement to sell the Los Angeles Dodgers to Guggenheim Baseball Management LP for $2 billion. The investor group was led by Mark R. Walter, CEO of hedge fund Guggenheim Partners LLC, and included Mandalay Entertainment Group CEO Peter Guber, Guggenheim president Todd Boehly, longtime baseball executive Stan Kasten, oil magnate Bobby Patton and former National Basketball Association star Earvin "Magic" Johnson.
Forbes magazine values the Padres at $458 million, 20th out of the league's 32 teams. The team had about $159 million in revenue for 2011, according to Forbes.
Expensive television broadcasting deals have raised the valuations of sports teams on the auction block. Most recently, on Aug. 2, Pilot Flying J Corp. CEO Jimmy Haslam agreed to pay about $1 billion for the National Football League's Cleveland Browns.
In December, the NFL signed a nine-year broadcasting contracts with CBS, NBC and Fox that is expected to increase the league's annual television related revenue to more than $3 billion.
Earlier this year, the Padres signed their own broadcasting contract with Fox that is worth about $1.2 billion.
Moores purchased the Padres in 1994 from Tom Werner for $84 million. The O'Malley family owned the Dodgers from 1950 to 1998.
The Padres began play in 1969 and have never won the World Series.
Robert Haymer, Adam Sullins and Rob Blashek of O'Melveny & Myers LLP represented the Padres on the deal.
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