LOS ANGELES (CelebrityAccess) — Clippers owner and former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has reached an agreement to purchase the Forum in Los Angeles from the Madison Square Garden Company.
The deal, which was done through the newly-formed CAPSS LLC, will acquire the Forum in Inglewood for $400 million in cash with the transaction expected to close in the second quarter of 2020, subject to regulatory approval.
As part of the terms of the deal, all of MSG’s current Forum employees will be extended employment offers by the new owner.
The deal also included provisions to clear all litigation surrounding the plans for the new privately financed, 18,000-capacity arena to serve as home court for the Clippers. The project is currently undergoing an environmental review by the City of Inglewood and public hearings to approve the project are expected to be held later this summer.
MSG, which owns the New York Knicks, had filed several legal challenges to the Clippers’ new arena plan over its proximity to the Forum. MSG alleged that the new arena would violate a competition agreement with the city. MSG also argued that the city had intentionally deceived MSG by convincing them to sell land for the development of a technology park that was later sold to Ballmer, according to the Los Angeles Times.
“This is an unprecedented time, but we believe in our collective future,” said Ballmer. “We are committed to our investment in the City of Inglewood, which will be good for the community, the Clippers, and our fans.”
According to a statement from CAPSS LLC, having the two arenas under one ownership umbrella will facilitate coordination between the two venues, improving traffic congestion around basketball games and concerts.
“We know traffic is something that many Inglewood residents worry about. While we have gone to great lengths to provide an unprecedented traffic-management plan for the new basketball arena, this acquisition provides a much greater ability to coordinate and avoid scheduling events at the same time at both venues,” said Chris Meany, a principal of Wilson Meany, the developer overseeing the new basketball arena project.