Mets Have History And Ties With Allen & Company
With the sale of the New York Mets to Steve Cohen falling apart, the team has announced it has engaged Allen & Company to handle the process of finding a new buyer.
This is not unusual. Back in 2010, Allen & Company was retained to help sell the Houston Astros. They were retained to do perform the same services for the Houston Astros two years later.
Back in 2011, Allen & Company was also retained by the Mets to sell minority shares of the team in the wake of the Madoff scandal. In fact, they were the company who brokered the David Einhorn deal which had fallen apart similar to how the Steve Cohen deal just did.
That deal not being consummated had many of the same rumors the Cohen deal had including pushback from Major League Baseball and a five year period before he could be the team’s designated control person. In the end, Einhorn would say:
It is clear that it will not be possible for me to consummate the transaction on the terms that the Sterling-Mets organization and I originally agreed to several months ago. The extensive nature of changes that were proposed to me at the last minute has made a successful transaction impossible.
(Teri Thompson, Michael O’Keefe, Bill Madden, New York Daily News).
The Mets ties to Allen & Company run deeper than the failed Einhorn deal and sale of minority shares in the team.
As first noted by MMO‘s Ethan Schwager, Bradley Wilpon was hired by Allen & Company in 2018 as an investment banking analyst. He is the son of Jeff Wilpon and the college teammate of Austin Bossart, who the Mets obtained from the Philadelphia Phillies in exchange for Jason Vargas at the trade deadline last season.
Beyond that, Fortune Magazine describes Steve Greenberg, son of Hall of Famer Hank Greenberg, as close personal friends of Fred Wilpon. Fortune also notes Greenberg has been a member of the Mets Board of Directors as a director since 2010.
During his relationship with the Mets, Greenberg has not only helped in finding buyers, but he’s also been a pivotal part in two of the major team revenue streams. He negotiated the $400 million naming rights deal for Citi Field, and he helped in the development of SNY.
His work with the Mets is not unusual. As noted, he has helped find buyers for other Major League teams, and he has performed similar services for NBA and NHL teams. However, Greenberg doesn’t sit on those boards.
Overall, the hiring of Allen & Company is not remotely unusual. In fact, this is THE company you use to find a buyer. The only thing which is unusual is just how interrelated Allen & Company and the New York Mets seem to be.