Alex Rodriguez and Jennifer Lopez have added some more clout to their bid to buy the Mets, bringing billionaire Mike Repole into their group, per ESPN’s Darren Rovell (Twitter link). The 51-year-old Queens native co-founded Glaceau/Energy Brands, the original creator of Vitamin Water, in addition to co-founding the BODYARMOR sports drink company. Repole also owns his own stable which has several notable racehorses.
It’s not the first time that Repole has expressed an interest in purchasing his hometown club, per Josh Kosman and Zach Braziller of the New York Post. He previously expressed interest in 2011 but did not make a formal bid. And while Repole’s roughly $1 billion net worth eclipses the combined worth of Rodriguez and Lopez by most calculations, Kosman and Braziller report that A-Rod and J. Lo are still expected to be the designated control owners of the team.
According to the Post, Repole is one of two investors working with Galatioto Sports Partners — an investment bank that could contribute approximately a quarter billion dollars to the bid. The A-Rod/J. Lo group has also been working with JPMorgan in their efforts to compile a bid, and other investors could yet join the fray. Rovell notes that the bid from Rodriguez and Lopez is “very real.”
The Rodriguez/Lopez group is up against a group headed up by Philadelphia 76ers/New Jersey Devils owners Josh Harris and David Blitzer in their pursuit to buy the Mets. No other suitors are known right now, although other groups could yet emerge. Regardless, it’s become increasingly clear in recent months that Mets ownership, led by the Wilpon family, are amenable to a sale of the team. Back in December, New York billionaire Steve Cohen reportedly agreed to a framework on a gradual sale that would see him increase his stake in the club to 80 percent by 2025. However, that deal fell apart in February, when Cohen officially pulled out of the deal.
Given the economic crash that has been brought about by the ongoing pandemic, it’s all but certain that the Mets would sell well shy of the $2.6 billion figure that was reported back in December. However, the lost revenue to date — and any further projected losses even if a 2020 season commences — could also increase the Wilpons’ urgency to sell a majority stake in the team.