Teams owned / ownership stake: Pittsburgh Steelers | minority
Other businesses / titles: Larry Paul: Laurel Crown Partners, Managing Principal; Stephen Paul: Louis Berkman Co., President
How did you come to own a sports team?
We had been looking for a while and had meaningful discussions with two other teams. On the Steelers investment specifically, we were approached by bankers and management at the NFL who knew we had been looking around.
Is it an investment or more of a hobby?
Both. It’s kind of hard to not think of this as an investment given the price tag and the amount of capital deployed. Having said that, it’s hard not to be a fan too, especially since we grew up in Pittsburgh and have been passionate Steelers fans for more than 40 years.
Is it a good investment?
So far so good. It seems to be performing very well as an investment.
Other than winning, what’s the best thing about owning part of a sports team?
The NFL is filled with extremely interesting and intelligent people in ownership and at the League. The ability to interface with such an extensive group of absolutely fascinating people has been extraordinary.
What’s the worst thing (besides losing)?
We really haven’t experienced anything that we view as negative. It has been a terrific experience all the way around.
How many games a season do you attend?
Between the two of us, typically 10 to 12 games plus the post season each year. It only makes sense to keep an eye on such a sizable investment and it provides a good chance to catch up with the team’s management.
What was your favorite team when you were growing up?
The Pittsburgh Steelers. It’d be tough to have grown up in Pittsburgh in the ’70s and have any other answer.