After months of negotiations with the owner of the Detroit Pistons, billionaire investor Tom Gores has reached a deal to buy the struggling basketball franchise.
The acquisition, which still must be approved by the National Basketball Association, also includes the Palace of Auburn Hills arena, DTE Energy Music Theatre and the operating rights to Meadow Brook Music Festival.
Financial terms were not disclosed. In January, Forbes magazine estimated that the Pistons were worth $360 million.
Long rumored as a potential buyer, Gores, the chief executive of Beverly Hills investment firm Platinum Equity, had been negotiating since at least January with current Pistons owner Karen Davidson, who took control of the team after her husband, Bill, died in 2009.
“I know it’s been a long process and I appreciate the patience and support of the Detroit community,” said Gores, 46, in a statement. “I have been impressed with the Davidson family and the way it has protected and built such a storied franchise. I grew up here, I am glad to be back, and I am very excited about all the possibilities looking forward.”
Through a spokesman, Gores declined further comment.
Gores, who grew up in Michigan and graduated from Michigan State University, has continued to pursue investments in the state through his firm.
The brother of private equity titan Alec Gores, Tom Gores founded Platinum in 1995 and subsequently grew it into one of the largest in Los Angeles. In the process, Gores has amassed a personal fortune topping $2 billion, according to the Business Journal’s annual Wealthiest Angelenos list.
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