CAA In Talks With PE Investors Over Sports Expansion

LOS ANGELES (CelebrityAccess MediaWire) -— The Creative Artists Agency has reportedly been in talks with a number of private equity firms such as Kohlberg Kravis Roberts and TPG over a possible joint venture or alliance to expand the agency's presence in the sports world.

While the potential deal is in the early, exploratory phases, a number of the private equity firms involved in the discussion have also expressed an interest in acquiring minority partnership in CAA, the New York Times has reported.

Sports is a high volume business for a company like CAA and produces income not only from high-value player contracts and endorsements, but sponsorship deals as well. CAA has been moving deeper into the sports world in recent years through recruiting, bringing in high profile sports agents like Tom Condon, Ken Kremer and Leon Rose, the lawyer who reps the National Basketball Association.

According to the New York Times, CAA is looking to other agencies, such as IMG — owned by a private equity financier, Theodore J. Forstmann — as an example. IMG consults and sells sponsorship rights to major sporting events such as Wimbledon and has rights to sports franchises such as Major League Baseball, the Ryder Cup and the Premier League.

The Times also noted that this isn't CAA's first foray into the private equity world and the percentery is a co-owner of Evolution Media Capital, formed in partnership with three former Merrill Lynch alums to put together sports and film deals. – CelebrityAccess Staff Writers

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