View From The US: Adelson Family Buying Majority Stake in Dallas Mavericks
November 30, 2023
In this week’s View From The US article, Sportico’s Eben Novy-Williams and Scott Soshnick broke the news that the Adelson family of Las Vegas would be buying majority control of the Dallas Mavericks from Mark Cuban
Billionaire Miriam Adelson, widow of late businessman Sheldon Adelson, and her family are close to buying a majority stake in the Dallas Mavericks from Mark Cuban, according to someone familiar with the details.
Adelson sparked speculation across the sports world Tuesday afternoon when Las Vegas Sands (NYSE: LVS) said in a filing that she would sell $2 billion in stock in order to buy a majority stake in a sports franchise. The filing said that there was a “binding purchase agreement,” but did not name the team.
It’s unclear how the Mavericks are being valued in the deal, which is still subject to NBA approval, or how much the family is buying. The filing said the agreement was for a “majority” stake, but multiple reports say Cuban will retain operational control. The family would use proceeds from the stock sale, plus “cash on hand” to finance the transaction, according to the filing.
Cuban didn’t immediately respond to an email seeking comment. Cuban, 65, said earlier this week that he was leaving the popular TV show Shark Tank after 16 years. A representative for the Adelsons via Las Vegas Sands didn’t immediately return a message left at his office.
Miriam Adelson, 78, controls more than 400 million shares of Sands, worth about $19 billion. Much of the stock is held in benefit for her children with Sheldon, as well as potentially other family members, including Sheldon’s children from a prior marriage.
Given pro sports’ wariness of mingling gambling and ownership interests, it’s possible the sale is for a trust beneficiary, who would probably have enough distance from the Sands to sidestep any prohibitions, given the fact Miriam controls all the gambling business equity. Adelson scion Matan Adelson recently purchased an Israeli pro basketball club that competes in the Euroleague.
If Miriam Adelson becomes the controlling owner, she would be a rare female owner in major U.S. sports. She would also be one of the richest. Her wealth, including the trusts she controls, is $32.3 billion, according to Forbes, making her the 44th richest person in the world.
There are only a handful of sports team owners ahead of her, including NBA Clippers owner Steve Ballmer (worth $114 billion) and Denver Broncos owner Rob Walton ($66 billion).
With assistance from Brendan Coffey.