Chicago Cubs Valued at $2.15 Billion for Purposes of 5% Tribune Sale

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Chicago Cubs Valued at $2.15 Billion for Purposes of 5% Tribune Sale

Chicago Cubs

This is merely a fun factoid at a time when business-related topics are so aggressively discussed in the Cubs sphere.

With the Ricketts Family having purchased the final 5% of the Cubs organization – the portion that was retained by the Tribune Company as part of the original 2009 leveraged partnership – we have a data point on how the Cubs were valued by the parties for the purposes of that sale:

The Ricketts Family paid $107.5 million for 5% of the Cubs this year, so that means the valuation at the time was pegged at $2.15 billion.

In its most recent Business of Baseball, Forbes valued the Cubs at $2.9 billion, so the internal $2.15 billion figure is dramatically lower. The caveats there are many: we don’t know exactly what is being included in each valuation (there are related properties – a share in NBC Sports Chicago, external developments, the rooftop businesses, and, of course, Wrigley Field – that may or may not be included in each); we don’t know what financial elements of the deal might have spurred a particular price tag on the 5% purchase; and we don’t know exactly *when* the price tag on the 5% was agreed to (for all we know, it was an option price put into place many years ago).

That is all to say, there’s a data point that the Ricketts Family is valuing the Cubs business at $2.15 billion – a sizable increase from the roughly $900 million original purchase price. That price might be a little low compared to what the actual value is, and it’s *DEFINITELY* much lower than the price tag would be if someone wanted to show up and try to purchase the team today away from the Ricketts Family.

And if the new TV network takes off, the Cubs will be worth even more.

In short: the Cubs are very valuable, and if you wanted to buy 0.001% of the team, it would cost you between like $25,000 and $40,000.

… Let’s pool some money and do it!

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Author: Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and @Brett_A_Taylor.