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Tom Barrack, Leo Hindery are latest players in Dodgers bidding

Barrack, head of Santa Monica's Colony Capital, joins bid led by Hindery, founder of Yankees' cable channel, and New York financier Marc Utay. It's one of at least eight bids to survive first cut.

January 29, 2012|By Bill Shaikin
  • Leo Hindery, left, and his group have picked up Los Angeles financial mogul Tom Barrack in their bid to buy the Dodgers.
Leo Hindery, left, and his group have picked up Los Angeles financial mogul… (Photos from Bloomberg and…)

Tom Barrack has partnered with Leo Hindery on a bid for the Dodgers, bringing together a prominent Los Angeles billionaire with the founder of the New York Yankees' cable channel.

The alliance was disclosed Sunday by a person familiar with the Dodgers sale process but not authorized to discuss it.

Hindery and fellow New York financier Marc Utay lead one of at least eight groups that survived Friday's first cut among the bidders. That group had been one of the two prospective buyers known to remain in the bidding without a significant tie to Los Angeles.

The other, St. Louis Rams owner Stan Kroenke, has a residence in Malibu and could move the Rams back to Los Angeles as soon as 2015, depending on whether the football team and its St. Louis landlord can agree on stadium renovations.

Steven Cohen, the Connecticut-based investment billionaire, has partnered with influential Southland agent Arn Tellem and has joined the board of the Museum of Contemporary Art.

Frank McCourt, the Dodgers' outgoing owner, thinks the team will be sold for at least $1.5 billion. Beyond the money, however, McCourt has said that he would consider community commitment in selecting his successor.

"It's somebody who is a huge baseball fan, who loves this community and is willing to commit to this community and put everything they have into it," McCourt said in November, "and bring a world championship to L.A."

Barrack and Hindery have experience in off-field ways of increasing franchise value; McCourt hopes such opportunities will drive the bidding.

The Dodgers' new owner can launch a team-owned television channel, as Hindery built for the Yankees. The Dodgers are scheduled to receive $39 million from Fox Sports next year, the last under the team's current TV contract. The Dodgers could double or triple their annual revenue under a new deal with Fox Sports or Time Warner Cable, but they could try to generate more money by building a team-owned channel.

Barrack heads Colony Capital, a Santa Monica firm that controls $29 billion in assets. Colony enhanced the financial fortunes of Japan's Fukuoka Softbank Hawks in part by renovating a hotel and shopping center surrounding their ballpark. Colony also holds an ownership stake in the French soccer club Paris Saint-Germain and controls Miramax Films.

bill.shaikin@latimes.com

twitter.com/BillShaikin

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