Pera Wants Local Partners with Grizzlies
As much as one-third of the Grizzlies could be owned by local partners as part of prospective owner Robert Pera’s bid to buy the team, sources close to Pera told The Commercial Appeal.
Pera’s associates insist that the 34-year-old CEO of Ubiquiti Networks isn’t pushing for local partners because he needs to, but because he wants to collaborate with Memphians for the franchise’s overall good. In addition to local partners, the group also could include out-of-town partners, said the sources, who requested anonymity because they have not been authorized to speak on Pera’s behalf. Also, the NBA discourages public comments by prospective owners and their representatives during the approval process.
Pera’s representatives have been in Memphis in recent weeks, meeting with dozens of business and community leaders in what has been termed a “listening tour.” As part of the visits, Pera’s team has had conversations with prospective minority partners. In those conversations, the sources said, prospective owners have voiced two main concerns: 1) the degree of Pera’s commitment to Memphis, 2) the fear of dilution of their ownership share over time.