The Denver Broncos have entered into a sale agreement that will set a record for the highest price ever paid for a North American sports team. According to ESPN, the agreement between to purchase the franchise from the Pat Bowlen Trust will cost the Walton-Penner family ownership group — led by Walmart heir Rob Walton — $4.65 billion.
The news of the sale was announced in a pair of statements, one by Walton and one by Broncos president and CEO Joe Ellis.
The Denver Broncos and the Walton-Penner family have entered into a purchase and sale agreement to acquire the team.
— Denver Broncos (@Broncos) June 8, 2022
The team has been in a trust since Bowlen, whose family purchased the franchise in 1984, handed day-to-day operations of the team to Ellis in 2014 as he battled Alzheimer’s. He died in 2019, and by that point, the team had been placed in a trust. It was officially put up for sale earlier this year.
According to ESPN, the sale is expected to become official sometime in the next 60-90 days after its terms are reviewed by the league’s finance committee and a vote is taken by its owners, with 24 yes votes needed for the sale to go through. The price tag of $4.65 million smashes the previous record for the sale of a North American team, which was held by Steve Cohen’s purchase of the New York Mets for $2.475 billion in 2020, and the record for the sale of an NFL team, which was held by David Tepper for his $2.3 billion purchase of the Carolina Panthers in 2018. It falls just short of the record price paid for a team, as the bar was set at end of May by the recent $5 billion purchase of Chelsea FC.