Boston Breakers seeking new majority investor

Jeff Kassouf August 7, 2011 12

The Boston Breakers are seeking to sell a controlling interest in the team, Breakers General Manager Andy Crossley said. Majority owner Gary Loveman, who has been the largest shareholder in the club since it organized in early 2007, has decided to place his share of the team on the market. Boston is seeking to sell at least 55 percent of the team..

Boston currently has six local investors, some of which have expressed interest in continuing for the 2012 season with a new investor(s) to round out the group, Crossley said.

The sale of the team has been in discussion for a number of months and there is no timetable for the sale to take place. However, the earlier it takes place the better for Boston, which will need to take advantage of the autumn months to sell sponsorships and tickets as well as sign players.

With interest in women’s soccer at its height, the timing is better than ever for the situation.

“The Breakers have not set a specific timetable to conclude a sale, but wanted to take advantage of the additional attention focused on the team now in order to facilitate conversations with potential investors,” Crossley said. “This will afford the club the best opportunity to enter the offseason with ownership settled and moving forward with roster development, sponsorship development and ticket sales for 2012.”

WPS league officials are aware of Loveman’s intention to sell a controlling interest in the team.

As of right now, there are some very preliminary discussions taking place with potential buyers, Crossley said. Whoever buys into the team would become part of a Breakers squad that boasts a league-leading fan base of 1,200 season tickets. Crossley said that the Breakers expect to lead the league in regular season ticket sales revenue this season.

On Saturday, 7,118 fans turned out to Harvard Stadium for Boston’s home match against magicJack. The crowd was the second largest in Breakers history. That game went head-to-head with a New England Revolution game at Gillette Stadium which drew 11,523. People are noticing the value in the Breakers’ product.

“We have had local people in Boston inquire about investing in the team over the past several weeks,” Crossley said. “These have been very preliminary conversations so far. But it’s been a promising development that has grown out of the popularity that women’s soccer has enjoyed in this World Cup year.”

The history of the Boston Breakers dates back to the WUSA days, when the team competed at Nickerson Field from 2001-2003. The Breakers name was rekindled in early 2007 to prepare for WPS, which played its first season in 2009.

  • Liliana

    Just out of curiosity, how much is that 55% worth?

  • http://hexapodia.blogspot.com Ray Radlein

    Just out of curiosity, how much is that 55% worth?

    We’ll find out when someone buys it.

    • Liliana

      I think I made the wrong question here, what I meant is how much is that 55%? Like what is the amount being offered for that percentage.

  • http://home.comcast.net/~StarCityFan/ StarCityFan

    An announcement similar to this was the first harbinger of the Freedom being moved to Florida and being renamed.

  • kool-aide

    And now we know why Boston hasn’t started selling season tix yet. And let’s hope the Borislow craziness hasn’t sunk the ship.

    I wonder whether this owner is trying to make back some money by selling when interest in women’s soccer may be “high” or whether this owner wants to get out due to financial fatigue. The answer to that question determines my level of concern for survival (which is usually at level orange anyway).

    The article says there have been some preliminary discussions with a potential buyer. But CRS had a new investor lined up, too.

    • newsouth

      wow, keep adding dan’s name to everything that is wrong with the league. sink what ship? AEG? Jeff Cooper? NeSmiths? Anyone else? he has nothing to do with the other franchises. these guys and gals have their own money and are independent thinkers. what he does in florida is nothing? hasnt stop attendance, nothing? he’ll make a nice scapegoat if the league goes away but that would be a bigger joke than Fitz having the most expensive roster in the league.

  • Eric

    Gary Loveman is the CEO of Caesars Entertainment, the world’s largest casino gaming company. Among Caesars’ properties is the World Series of Poker, which lost a number of players this year due to the US government crackdown on online satellite tournaments.

    I don’t know if that has anything to do with his decision to sell, but the gaming industry does have a tendency to suffer during economic downturns. Also, Massachusetts is looking to legalise casino gaming, so he could be looking to shift his local focus to lobbying Beacon Hill for casino contracts. Again, I don’t know if that’s the case either, but these are simply preliminary thoughts.

  • skott daltonic

    i am a convert this summer to the WPS. i live in lower allston and have been to every home game since the Brazil world cup game.

    i’m a fan. i have a great time at the games and enjoy the sport quite a bit.

    i’d like them to stay in Boston and stay at Harvard stadium.

    that being said, it’s a huge stadium w/ not a lot of people in it most games.

    • http://www.equalizersoccer.com/ Jeff Kassouf

      Glad to here you converted after such a great Women’s World Cup. Thanks for checking out the site, too. Harvard is cavernous, but it can be pretty intimate, especially with the larger (6K+) crowds. I think it has such a charm to it. I’ve been there a lot since the team started playing there. I think everyone hopes to see Boston stick around. The Breakers have been spectacular for WPS.

  • Jackie

    I have every intention of buying the “on the field” package once the Breakers put them on sale. Heck, I’ll pay that price without all the extras, just keep the Breakers in Boston!!

  • David Kimmelman

    I’ve been a member of the Breakers Advisory Council since the WPS brought Women’s Pro soccer back and as a volunteer leading field operations as it relates to kids that participate in the High Five tunnel, Sidekicks (holding players hands as they enter the field) and supervising the Ball Kids for all home games, I have thoroughly enjoyed, as have my three daughters being around these most gracious and talented women. I sincerely hope the Breakers find an owner, and I also hope people around the US and especially the local media that pay not no attention to the Breakers and other local WPS teams come to realize just how much this league and these players mean to young girls across the US. Please help keep the WPS alive with your attendance and your passion for good quality soccer!

  • http://www.soccerfloflo.com F.M

    Kind of nerve wrecking, but maybe an investor will emerge. However, this depends on whether or not the entire league survives… ‘concerned that other teams have not been as transparent as the Boston Breakers about the situation. Realistically, a serious and smart investor( nevermind a majority investor)will be more concerned about the league’s future- unless the Boston Breakers and Women’s Soccer at professional level can continue with or without the current league.