Two black businessmen from Chicago, Bertram Lee and Peter Bynoe, became the first minority owners of a major league sports franchise Saturday, purchasing the National Basketball Assn.'s Denver Nuggets for $65 million, with backing from media executive Robert Wussler.
An earlier bid by Lee and Bynoe to acquire the team fell through when they failed to raise enough capital by an Oct. 10 deadline.
Wussler is president and chief executive officer of the Washington-based Comsat Video Enterprises, which put up $17 million and will own 62.5% of the team. Lee and Bynoe and their Chicago investors will put up $8 million and will own 37.5%. The balance of the purchase price will be financed.
The structure of the sale calls for Lee and Bynoe to run the team as managing partners. Lee, 50, is a banker and broadcasting executive. Bynoe, 38, is a real estate developer.