UTAH JAZZ

Arctos Buys Share In Jazz Ownership Group, Eyes Third Sports Franchise In Utah

Aug 19, 2022, 2:36 PM | Updated: Aug 29, 2022, 1:52 pm
Utah-Jazz-Ownership-Group-Ryan-Smith-Dwyane-Wade-Arctos...
Utah Jazz ownership group members Ryan Smith and Dwyane Wade (Deseret News: Jeffrey D. Allred)
(Deseret News: Jeffrey D. Allred)

SALT LAKE CITY – Arctos Sports Partners is buying a minority share in the Smith Entertainment Group (SEG), the entity that owns the Utah Jazz, and hopes to bring a third professional sports team to the state of Utah.

A private equity firm, Arctos launched in 2019 and has built more than $5 billion in assets through the Artcos Sports fund. The company specializes in investing in passive minority stakes in professional sports franchises whose value appreciates faster than traditional stock investments.

“SEG and Arctos are bullish on the Utah sports and entertainment market and are aligned in their commitment to the State of Utah, which includes a focus on SEG’s expansion plans, its intention to bring a third professional sports franchise to the state, and its goal to build Utah as a premier sports and entertainment center,” according to a release regarding the purchase.

Arctos already owns minority shares in three NBA teams including the Golden State Warriors, Sacramento Kings, and the Philadelphia 76ers, several MLB teams including the Los Angeles Dodgers, the Chicago Cubs, and the Boston Red Sox, Liverpool FC of the English Premiere League, various NHL teams, and Real Salt Lake.

“We believe in Utah and all the amazing things happening in the state and we believe SEG is poised to be the next big sports and entertainment group,” Chad Hutchinson of Arctos Sports said in the release.

“Ryan Smith has an eye for opportunity and innovation, and we look forward to supporting his vision for Smith Entertainment Group and Utah sports fans. Arctos works with visionary ownership groups, and Utah has that in SEG. Their commitment to giving back to the community and building world-class franchises align perfectly with Arctos’ mission. We are excited to work with Ryan and the team to explore more sports-related opportunities around the state and the opportunity to build a premier sports and entertainment center here.”

The team didn’t announce which professional sports league they would target to bring to the Utah market.

“My wife Ashley and I are passionate about the state of Utah and are committed to building organizations that can be a unifying force in our community. Few things do that as powerfully as sports,” Smith said.

“We are excited to partner with Arctos. They are committed to Utah and to investing in this community and our sports teams and facilities. As SEG continues to build out the professional sports landscape in the state, the Arctos partnership brings strong commitment to Utah sports and a deep connection across all major sports leagues.”

There was no timeline on when SEG and Arctos could bring a team to Utah, but internally, the partnership is believed to “significantly” increase the odds of bringing another professional sports team to the state.

Arctos will not alter the governing structure of the Jazz or their operation within the NBA.

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