Charles Robinson of Yahoo Sports, citing two sources, reports that Sean “Diddy” Combs is serious about making a push to purchase the Carolina Panthers franchise now that Jerry Richardson intends to sell his take in the team.
According to Robinson, free agent QB Colin Kaepernick is expected to be a part of Combs’ ownership group and he has already begun reaching out to a handful of business leaders, venture capitalists and sports icons to discuss a potential ownership group.
Robinson mentions that Combs and Kaepernick are looking to create an ownership group that more closely represents the racial makeup of the league’s players, which is about 70 percent African-American.
“The interest is real and it’s moving forward,” a source tells Robinson of a Combs and Kaepernick partnership. “They want to make this a reality. It’s serious.”
As for what it would take for them to purchase the team, Robinson explains that Richardson owns 48 percent of the franchise, but this would be enough to constitute a controlling share in the team.
Adam Schefter reported Monday that the Panthers are expected to sell for around $2.5 billion. Assuming this figure is accurate, Robinson says that it would require Combs and Kaepernick to come up with $1.2 billion to acquire Richardson’s share of the team.
Forbes has estimated Combs’ net worth at $820 million, which means he may have to liquidate some assets in order to afford the 48 percent stake it would require or bring in some other investors.
It’s worth mentioning that Kaepernick is currently pursuing a collusion case against the NFL and some owners and it remains to be seen what kind of impact this could have on a potential bid that involves him.
We’ll have more regarding the Panthers’ sale as the news is available.