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Another buyer is interested in joining an ownership group to buy the New York Mets.
Bodyarmor founder Mike Repole is a part of the group attempting to purchase the team from the Fred Wilpon Family, a person close the situation confirmed to CNBC. The group is headed by former Major League Baseball star Alex Rodriguez and actor and singer Jennifer Lopez.
Action Network’s Darren Rovell first reported Repole’s involvement in the ownership group.
This is Repole’s second time showing interest in the Mets. The Queens native also wanted to purchase the franchise in 2011 when the Mets were worth roughly $850 million. According to Forbes, the Mets are currently valued at more than $2 billion.
Steve Cohen, the billionaire hedge fund manager, previously placed a bid to purchase roughly 80% of the Mets, but the deal fell apart. With Cohen out, for now, reports of Rodriguez and Lopez’s interest in the team surfaced in March.
Philadelphia 76ers owner Josh Harris and Apollo Global Management founder Josh Harris, who also recently completed a deal to purchase shares of the Pittsburgh Steelers of the National Football League, is also an interested buyer.
Wilpon had repurchased a bigger slice of the team in March 2019, with Sterling Equities — which Wilpon co-founded — agreeing to buy back a 12% stake in the organization. That interest was sold to help fund a settlement for victims of the Bernard Madoff pyramid scheme.
Wilpon and Saul Katz, the co-founder of Sterling Equities and president of the Mets, were sued in 2010 by Irving Picard, the trustee representing Madoff victims, claiming the pair should have been aware of the scheme. The lawsuit was settled in 2012 for $162 million and later reduced to $61 million.
Repole famously sold beverage maker Glaceau in 2007 for $4.1 billion. In 2014, he partnered with basketball icon Bryant who invested $6 million in Bodyarmor. Bryant turned that investment into about $200 million (on paper) when Coca-Cola acquired a minority stake in 2018.
CNBC’s Jessica Golden contributed to this report.