The Nashville Predators ownership group are reportedly nearing the sale of the franchise to former Tennessee governor Bill Haslam, according to a late night report from Sportico‘s Eben Novy-Williams.
There Haslam will gradually buy out Preds ownership group chairman, Herbert Fritch’s shares to become majority owner over the next three years, according to a report by Axios’ Nate Rau.
BREAKING: The buyer nearing a deal to purchase the Nashville Predators is former Tennessee governor @BillHaslam, brother of Browns owner Jimmy Haslam.
— Eben Novy-Williams (@novy_williams) June 17, 2022
The Predators are currently owned by a group of investors, Predators Holdings LLC, which is headed by chairman Herbert Fritch. The group bought the franchise in 2007 when then owner Craig Leipold sold the team for $193 million, keeping the team in Nashville.
Sportico values the Predators franchise at $630 million, while Haslam’s net worth is $2.3 billion, according to Forbes.
The Preds worth is listed at No. 26 out of the 32 NHL franchises ,and ranked 122nd out of US sports teams, according to Sportico. Nashville’s revenue for 2020 was listed at $138 million and $64 million for 2021, according to the report.
Haslam served as governor of the Volunteer State from 2011-2019. Haslam’s brother, Jim Haslam, is notably the owner of NFL franchise the Cleveland Browns.
The past four seasons, the Predators have failed to move past the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs and have not been to the Western Conference Finals since winning in the 2016-2017 season.
This story has been updated for accuracy.