TV Market: Nielsen DMA #20*
Existing Team: Sacramento Republic FC – USL
Venue: An approved $226M privately funded stadium complex will be built at the Railyards if an expansion slot is granted.
Money: Investment group led by Warren Smith (Sacramento Republic FC) and Kevin Nagle (EnvisionRX Options)
Summary: Meg Whitman, HP CEO and Ebay founder, joins the Sacramento ownership group just before their application is submitted. Reports surfaced late on January 31st that the city’s existing USL team, Sacramento Republic FC, was left out of the MLS application submitted by owner Kevin Nagle. These reports have have not yet to been fully substantiated but Republic FC issued a statement on Wednesday. The outcry over this last minute omission created a PR firestorm that looked bad for this city’s bid. On 2/4, the parties announced an agreement whereby the Republic FC brand name will be used if the MLS bid is successful.
Recent News & Resources:
- 11/10 – Sacramento stadium plan is approved by Sacramento City Council [Sacramento Bee]
- 12/21 – Sacramento MLS Expansion Profile – Brian Straus [SI]12/21 – Sacramento MLS Expansion Profile – Brian Straus [SI]
- 1/27 – A brief articles discusses worries that San Diego’s MLS bid could leave Sacramento out of the picture. [ABC10 Sacramento]
- 1/30 – Sacramento will submit its bid tomorrow and the organization believes they have an advantage based on the advanced state of their stadium plan. [Sacramento Business Journal]
- 2/1 – Sacramento Republic FC issues a statement regarding the MLS application saying that if it was submitted without the inclusion of Republic FC, it was done “in violation of our agreements and without our authorization.” [Sacramento Bee]
- 2/1 – MLS deputy commissioner Mark Abbot downplays the conflict between Nagle and Republic FC. He says the league will allow discussions to continue and the two groups will attempt to resolve undisclosed “issues.” [Sacramento Business Journal]
- 2/1 – Brian Straus gives his take on Sacramento’s ownership power struggle, including the Sacramento Mayor getting involved to help resolve the conflict. [SI]
- 2/4 – With the help of Mayor Steinberg, Nagle and Smith reach a deal of “undisclosed” terms allowing the MLS bid to use the Sacramento Republic FC brand. [Sacramento Bee]