Report: Junior Bridgeman approached in search for investors for new Bucks ownership group
According to a report in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel by Don Walker, former Buck Junior Bridgeman has been approached as a potential investor in the the team.
A source with knowledge of Herb Kohl’s efforts to bring in new investors to the Milwaukee Bucks as a way of keeping the team in Milwaukee, said Bridgeman, one of the wealthiest African-Americans in the country, has been approached about investing in the team, and he expressed interest.
In December, Kohl announced he would attempt to broaden the ownership base with an eye toward keeping the team in Milwaukee, and that he would retain Steve Greenberg as his advisor during his search. Greenberg is the managing director of Allen & Company.
Bridgeman owns hundreds of fast-food franchises and was listed 18th on Forbes’ “Richest African Americans” list for 2012. He’s also been at least somewhat active in conversations about bringing the NBA to his hometown of Louisville, Kentucky, though it seems like the conversations were more evaluation of possibilities and haven’t really been reported on since 2012.
About 20 people gathered at the first meeting to determine whether Louisville had the “level of interest” and “conditions necessary to attract a team,” Fischer said in a statement.
Back in 2008, Bridgeman’s name also came up in ownership discussions, but it wasn’t clear at that time if the team, or any portion of it, was up for sale.
“I would not want to be the main person. You’d like to add whatever insights you have into the game and that would be how I see being involved.”
But there again, when (Kohl) is ready I think he will talk to me. My sense is that you don’t push him. It’s not anything that he wants public, to happen. When he thinks the time is right, with the right group, I think he’ll do something. For the last 20-some years, he has carried the load for the franchise. Just because of that, it deserves to happen on his time frame.”
According to a January 2014 valuation by Forbes, the team is worth approximately $405 million and recently became profitable for the first time in a number of years under the revenue sharing of the NBA’s new collective bargain agreement. Herb Kohl bought the Bucks for $19 million in 1985.