Another detour in the road.
A funny thing happened on the way to buying the New York Mets for Steve Cohen. Apparently, Cohen may be on a prohibitive list when it comes to transferring the New York City lease that was signed between Mets owner Fred Wilpon and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg when a deal to build a new stadium was completed in 2006. Why can’t Cohen get the lease? That is simple. In 2014, his company, SAC Capital Advisors, pled guilty to the crime of insider trading and had to pay a $1.8 billion fine. Cohen himself was not charged but nine of his employees were either convicted or plead guilty to insider trading. Cohen’s case to get the lease is now being reviewed by Mayor Bill DeBlasio and his administration. Cohen has passed the initial Major League Baseball test by getting approval from the eight-member ownership committee to purchase the Mets. It is now onto another eight-member committee and if Cohen is found to be fit to own a Major League Baseball team, then it is onto the final round, getting approval from 23 owners to buy the team. DeBlasio and his administration have about three weeks left to sign off on the deal.
Cohen will invest $2.4 billion to buy the Mets. Cohen has money but his business record may not be all that attractive to some Major League Baseball owners. Cohen failed in his two previous attempts to buy Major League Baseball franchises. In 2012, his bid to buy the Los Angeles Dodgers failed because his bid was not as good as the Guggenheim Partners. Earlier this year, he whiffed trying to buy the Mets but Cohen and Wilpon completed the deal. Cohen now has to convince MLB owners and New York City officials that he is trustworthy to own the Mets.