Sturm makes new offer in bid for teams and Pepsi Center
November 16, 1999
DenverDenver — Billionaire Donald Sturm is trying to breathe new life into his $461 million deal to buy the Denver Nuggets, the Colorado Avalanche and the Pepsi Center from Ascent Entertainment Group. — Billionaire Donald Sturm is trying to breathe new life into his $461 million deal to buy the Denver Nuggets, the Colorado Avalanche and the Pepsi Center from Ascent Entertainment Group.
Denver — Billionaire Donald Sturm is trying to breathe new life into his $461 million deal to buy the Denver Nuggets, the Colorado Avalanche and the Pepsi Center from Ascent Entertainment Group.
A day after the planned purchase collapsed when he missed a deadline to resolve a deal-breaking dispute with the city of Denver, Sturm’s lawyers delivered a new offer to the city late Tuesday afternoon.
”I think this is a good-faith effort by Mr. Sturm to close this transaction on terms that are acceptable to him and that we believe should be acceptable to the city,” said Sturm lawyer Paul Jacobs.
Sturm agreed to buy the Denver NBA and NHL teams and their brand new arena from Ascent over the summer, and Ascent’s merger with Liberty Media Group is contingent on its sale of the sports assets.
But the deal hit a serious snag in recent weeks after the city insisted on guarantees that the teams would remain in Denver for 25 years even if Sturm, 67, were to die or sell a portion of the assets.
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Mayor Wellington Webb has stressed that the city needs to protect its interests because of the many recent franchise shifts by professional sports teams.
After Monday night’s deadline was missed, Ascent said it was unlikely the sale of the teams and arena to Sturm would take place and added it was considering suing him.
Jacobs would not discuss the specifics of Tuesday’s offer to the city, but he said it was a ”reasonable resolution” under which each side would have to give up some ground.
”We have sent a letter to the city, telling the city that we are prepared to close the transaction on the terms agreed upon with Ascent if the city is prepared to accept a proposal we have made to them regarding all of the open issues between us,” Jacobs said.
Sturm asked Denver officials to answer by 10 a.m. Thursday, he said.
Webb issued a statement late Tuesday saying Denver received Sturm’s letter, which he said ”demands that the city accept or reject a partially negotiated solution” to the disputes.
Webb said the letter contained some ”innaccuracies” regarding the city’s position, and he stressed the city will not respond until Ascent makes clear whether it is still ready to deal with Sturm.