Birmingham City owner Tom Wagner and club investor Tom Brady are considering a significant investment in the NFL.
Reports from the US sports business website Sportico suggest that Brady is leading an initiative to purchase equity in NFL club Las Vegas Raiders, with Knighthead, the American owners of Birmingham City, coordinating the financing for the potential deal.
NFL great Brady has faced delays in his investment plans. The setback occurred when some NFL team owners expressed dissatisfaction with the initial valuation of the Raiders against the equity Brady sought, reportedly up to 70% below market value. However, recent developments indicate that Brady and Wagner have revised their proposal based on an increased valuation, placing the Raiders between $5.77 billion (£4.6 billion) and $6.2 billion (£4.9 billion).
Sportico reports that the group is seeking a little over a 10% equity stake, with Brady’s share potentially reaching 7%. At a valuation of £4.9 billion, a 10% stake would amount to £490 million. However, due to the substantial debt on the team, primarily attributed to the construction of the Allegiant Stadium, the deal may be negotiated at a discounted rate.
The friendship between Birmingham City chairman Tom Wagner and NFL figure Tom Brady has grown over the years, starting when their children attended the same New York City school. Both have become active investors in sports and related businesses, with Brady currently serving as the Chairmen of the Advisory Board & Minority Owner at Birmingham City since August 2023. The duo has invested in various projects, including a Major League Pickleball franchise.
Their long-term plans for Birmingham City include a ground-breaking partnership with Oak View Group, heralding the club’s most substantial commercial deal to date. This collaboration involves naming rights for St Andrew’s (renamed St Andrews @ Knighthead Park), Wast Hills, and a proposed fan park on club-owned land. Wast Hills will be transformed into The Knighthead Training and Academy Grounds, with the overall deal potentially reaching an impressive £25.4 million.
If the investment in the Las Vegas Raiders goes through, it could mark a monumental deal for Birmingham City FC. Rumours are circulating about the club’s potential USA Pre-Season tour in the summer, promising substantial revenues. Given the recent developments, there may be an possible opportunities to play at Allegiant Stadium during one of these games.
Moreover, the proposed Sports Quarter in the heart of Birmingham and the potential for NFL games in the city could reshape the landscape for both Birmingham City FC and the city itself. The benefits for the club and the city could be substantial, with Knighthead making decisions that not only favour the football club but also contribute positively to the broader community.
In the world of sports investments, the collaboration between Tom Wagner, Tom Brady, and Knighthead could open new avenues for Birmingham City FC. As they set their sights on the NFL, the potential acquisition of equity in the Las Vegas Raiders represents a bold move that could bring significant benefits to both the football club and the city of Birmingham. The proposed deals, partnerships, and investments outlined by Wagner and Brady signal an exciting chapter for Birmingham City, showcasing the transformative power of strategic investments in the world of sports.