A little less baseball for the NY Times Company


A few years back, when its balance sheet looked better, The New York Times Company invested in the group that successfully bid to acquire the Boston Red Sox Major League Baseball Team. Now the Times Co. has sold a few of its shares in New England Sports Ventures (NESV).

As the owner of the Boston Globe, investing $75 million in the city’s MLB franchise was good community relations and likely a wise financial move back in 2001, given the historic ever-escalating value of major league sports teams. But the Times Co. needs cash today, so it is selling 50 of its 750 shares of NESV. If you’re an interested buyer, the company says it will continue to explore the sale of its remaining shares.

The Times Co. says it will book a pre-tax gain in Q1 on the sale of the 1.18% stake to venture capitalist Henry McCance, chairman emeritus of Greylock Partners. The sale will reduce the media company’s stake in NESV from 17.75% to 16.58%.

In addition to the Red Sox, NESV owns Fenway Park, 80% of New England Sports Network and 50% of a NASCAR team, Roush Fenway Racing. NESV is headed by John W. Henry as its principal owner.