Inter Miami, a club that was envisioned as far back as when David Beckham joined MLS in 2007, finally begins play this upcoming season.


Beckham, one of the world's most recognizable soccer stars, triggered his option to purchase an expansion franchise in 2014. The legendary English soccer player, who had stops during his playing days at Manchester United, Real Madrid and the LA Galaxy, is joined by Jorge Mas (above, left) and Marcelo Claure (center).


Mas, a Cuban-American born in Miami, is the Chairman of the Board and Co-Founder of MasTec. Claure is a Bolivian-American technology entrepreneur and businessman.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - MIN

Minnesota United

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Dr. Bill McGuire (above), the former UnitedHealth Group CEO, bought Minnesota United in 2012 when the club were in the NASL. MLS awarded Minnesota the 23rd franchise in 2015 as McGuire helped lead the club from the brink of extinction.


Behind McGuire, the club's ownership group includes Minnesota Twins owner Jim Pohlad, Minnesota Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor and Minnesota Wild investor Glen Nelson.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - MTL
Charlotte - 2019 - Announcement - Tepper with Fans

And then there were 30.


Charlotte was officially awarded MLS expansion team No. 30 with billionaire owner David Tepper leading the way to land a professional soccer team for his city.


Tepper joins a growing and varied list of owners, encompassing high-profile names from the world of business, the NBA and even Hollywood.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - ATL

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Atlanta United

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Arthur Blank


Arthur Blank, a man endearingly called Uncle Arthur by fans, has routinely invested heavily in the club, ushering in an era of immediate success after joining the league in 2017. After emerging victorious in MLS Cup in 2018, Atlanta went on to win the U.S. Open Cup and Campeones Cup this year. Blank is also the owner & chairman of the NFL's Atlanta Falcons and the clubs share Mercedes-Benz Stadium.


Blank is the co-founder of Home Depot, the world’s largest home improvement retailer, and retired from the company as chairman in 2001. He is also the chairman of the Blank Family Foundation, which has granted nearly $300 million to support early childhood development, education, the arts and parks and green space.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - AUS

Austin FC

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Eddie Margain, Matthew McConaughey, Anthony Precourt, Eduardo Margain and Bryan Sheffield (left to right)


Anthony Precourt (above center) is leading Austin FC into MLS with the club joining the league in 2021. Prior to his time with MLS and as previous owner of the Columbus Crew, Precourt entered the corporate finance business before eventually founding his own private equity firm in 2008, Precourt Capital Management.


Behind Precourt, Austin FC are represented by local minority investors, including A-list actor Matthew McConaughey.




Charlotte

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David Tepper


MLS's newest owner, David Tepper is responsible for delivering a team to Charlotte. The hedge fund manager, who worked at Goldman Sachs before founding Appaloosa Management, acquired the Carolina Panthers in 2018. Now, he'll have two Charlotte-based professional franchises.


Tepper had previously owned 5% of the Pittsburgh Steelers.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - CHI

Chicago Fire

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After initially acquiring 49 percent of the team in 2018, Joe Mansueto (above) purchased full control of the Fire earlier this year and is ushering in an era of change in Chicago. Since he assumed full ownership, the Fire have moved back downtown to Soldier Field and rebranded.


Mansueto is the founder and executive chairman of Morningstar, a global financial services firm headquartered in Chicago, which he founded in 1984. He's also on the board of the Art Institute of Chicago and Northwestern Memorial Hospital.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - CIN

FC Cincinnati

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Born in Cincinnati, Carl H. Lindner III (above, left) is a businessman who began working at American Financial Group, whose headquarters are in Cincinnati, in 1975 and has been chairman since 1987. He was involved in co-founding FC Cincy in 2015.


The club recently added Meg Whitman (above, right) and Dr. Griff Harsh as managing owners. Whitman is currently the Chief Executive Officer at Quibi while Harsh is the Julian R. Youmans Chair in Neurological Surgery at the University of California, Davis. Scott Farmer, CEO of Cintas Corp., and George Joseph (Joseph Auto Group) are also managing partners.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - COL

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Colorado Rapids

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Stan Kroenke (above), the businessman and entrepreneur, took control of the Rapids in 2004. A prominent figure in the sports world, he also owns the St. Louis Rams, Denver Nuggets, Colorado Avalanche and Premier League giants Arsenal.


Kroenke, the chairman of Kroenke Sports & Entertainment, founded the Kroenke Group, a real estate development firm that has built shopping centers and apartment buildings, in 1983.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - CLB

Columbus Crew SC

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Last offseason, the Crew headed to a new era when the Haslam and Edwards families (above) reached an agreement take over operating rights of Columbus Crew SC, keeping the franchise in Ohio. The new owners have already broken ground on the club's new stadium in the downtown Arena District of Columbus, which is scheduled to open in 2021.


Jimmy Haslam (above, left) is the CEO of the Pilot Flying J truck stop chain and a co-owner of the Cleveland Browns alongside his wife, Dee (above, center). Whitney Johnson is their eldest daughter, while Dr. Pete Edwards (above, right) is a local orthopedic surgeon.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - DAL

FC Dallas

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Clark and Dan Hunt, sons of the legendary Lamar Hunt, operate FC Dallas. The brothers also oversaw the construction of the National Soccer Hall of Fame in the south end of Toyota Stadium, the home of FCD.


In 1999, Clark worked closely his with father - who owned Columbus Crew - to construct what is now called MAPFRE Stadium, the first soccer-specific stadium in the United States. The brothers are also involved in the Hunt family’s long-standing interest in the NFL’s Kansas City Chiefs.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - DC

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D.C. United

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Initially joining the ownership group in 2012, Jason Levien (above, left) helped pave the way for D.C. United to build Audi Field, their state of the art new stadium. Stephen Kaplan (above, right) joined in 2018.


Both Levien and Kaplan have knowledge in interest in sports outside of D.C., as the pair are co-owners of Swansea City. Swansea are a Wales-based club in the English soccer pyramid currently playing in the Championship, the tier below the Premier League. Levien is the former CEO of the Memphis Grizzlies, where Kaplan is a minority owner.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - HOU

Houston Dynamo

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Gabriel Brener is the CEO of the Brener International Group, a private investment firm and family office with global business and investment interests. He's the only Mexican-born owner of a major league American professional sports team and along with Ben Guill and Jake Silverstein acquired the majority interest in the Dynamo — and NWSL's Houston Dash — in 2015. 


The club have since added some star power in their ownership group. Earlier this year, Houston Rockets superstar James Harden acquired a minority stake in the club while retired boxing superstar Oscar de la Hoya is also a part owner.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - LAFC

LAFC

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LAFC ownership group with MLS Commissioner Don Garber.


One of the largest ownership groups in the league, LAFC are led by managing owner Larry Berg, a senior partner at Apollo Global Management and chairman of McGraw-Hill Education. Berg, Brandon Beck and Bennett Rosenthal took over in 2016 as managing owners.


Behind Berg, Beck and Rosenthal, LAFC have more than a few recognizable names. Actor Will Ferrell, CEO of Mandalay Entertainment Group Peter Guber, LA Lakers legend Magic Johnson, Cardiff City owner Vincent Tan, US soccer legend Mia Hamm, World Series champion Nomar Garciaparra and former ESPN analyst Tom Penn are just a few of those involved.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - LA

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LA Galaxy

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Philip Anschutz (above), the CEO of Anschutz Entertainment Group, is one of the founders of Major League Soccer. Anschutz is one of only four recipients of the National Soccer Hall of Fame's Medal of Honor for his contributions to growing the sport of soccer in the United States. He made his fortune in industries including oil, railroads, telecom, real estate and entertainment.


AEG also owns 45 percent of the Swedish soccer team Hammarby IF as well as the Los Angeles Kings, among other sports ventures.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - MIA

Inter Miami CF

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Inter Miami, a club that was envisioned as far back as when David Beckham joined MLS in 2007, finally begins play this upcoming season.


Beckham, one of the world's most recognizable soccer stars, triggered his option to purchase an expansion franchise in 2014. The legendary English soccer player, who had stops during his playing days at Manchester United, Real Madrid and the LA Galaxy, is joined by Jorge Mas (above, left) and Marcelo Claure (center).


Mas, a Cuban-American born in Miami, is the Chairman of the Board and Co-Founder of MasTec. Claure is a Bolivian-American technology entrepreneur and businessman.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - MIN

Minnesota United

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Dr. Bill McGuire (above), the former UnitedHealth Group CEO, bought Minnesota United in 2012 when the club were in the NASL. MLS awarded Minnesota the 23rd franchise in 2015 as McGuire helped lead the club from the brink of extinction.


Behind McGuire, the club's ownership group includes Minnesota Twins owner Jim Pohlad, Minnesota Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor and Minnesota Wild investor Glen Nelson.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - MTL

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Montreal Impact

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Joey Saputo founded the Impact in 1993, when he was working for Saputo Inc., a dairy processing company founded by his father Lino Saputo in 1954. He was named senior VP of commercial and business development in 2004.


In 2014, Saputo acquired Bologna FC, which was then in Serie B, Italy's second tier of professional soccer. The club was shortly promoted to the top division, where they currently reside.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - NSH

Nashville SC

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John R. Ingram (above) is the owner of Nashville SC and the chairman of the Ingram Content Group, Lightning Source and Digital Ingram, and Ingram Industries. He is the son of E. Bronson Ingram II, the founder of Ingram Industries.


Ingram, alongside fellow owners Mark Wilf, Zygi Wilf and Leonard Wilf, helped deliver the city an MLS franchise as well as the foundation for their new stadium, Nashville Fairgrounds Stadium.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - NE

New England Revolution

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A longtime figure around the league, Robert Kraft's interest in soccer in America predates MLS. The Kraft family, including Jonathan Kraft (above, right), became the founding owner/operator of the Revs, one of the league's inaugural 10 clubs.


Kraft, the founder, chairman and CEO of Kraft Group is a Brookline, Massachusetts, native. Kraft also is the chairman and CEO of the New England Patriots, who have experienced an unprecedented era of success in the NFL since the turn of the century.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - NYC

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NYCFC


NYCFC are owned by City Football Group, which also owns and operates Manchester City and Melbourne City FC, among other clubs around the globe.


City Football Group helped transform Manchester City into the Premier League juggernauts they are today. The New York Yankees, MLB's most successful franchise, also own a stake in NYCFC. City Football Group are owned by Abu Dhabi United Group, a private equity company owned by Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, who is a member of the Abu Dhabi Royal Family.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - RBNY

NY Red Bulls


Similar to NYCFC, the Red Bulls also fall under a global sporting umbrella. Red Bull GmbH produces the Red Bull Energy Drink, headquartered in Austria.


Red Bull GmbH also own and operate Bundesliga club RB Leipzig, who rose from the lower divisions to the top of the Bundesliga in rapid succession and compete in the Champions League, as well as Red Bull Salzburg, the Austrian juggernauts currently coached by American Jesse Marsch.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - ORL

Orlando City

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At 23-years-old, Flavio Augusto da Silva (above) started Wise Up, a language learning service that now has over 400 schools operating in five countries: Brazil, Argentina, Columbia, China and the United States. He is also the president of T-BDH CAPITAL which invests in new ventures focused on education and the technology industry.


Silva was central to the financing package that allowed OCSC to fully fund the entire construction of Exploria Stadium, which opened in 2017.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - PHI

Philadelphia Union

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Jay Sugarman (above) is the lead owner of the Philadelphia Union and the chairman and CEO of iStar, a leading real estate finance and investment company in the United States that he formed in 1993.


This year, the Union earned a club-record 55 points en route to their first ever playoff victory.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - POR

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Portland Timbers

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One of the league's most well-known owners, Merritt Paulson (above) helped bring Major League Soccer to Portland. The Timbers have been a success on and off the field, with tremendous support at Providence Park as well as winning 2015 MLS Cup.


Paulson previously owned the Minor League Baseball franchise, Portland Beavers, but sold his interest in the club to focus on soccer. He also owns the Portland Thorns, the hugely successful NWSL side. He's the son of Hank Paulson Jr., who served as the 74th United States Secretary of the Treasury.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - RSL

Real Salt Lake

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Dell Loy Hansen initially joined Real Salt Lake's ownership group in 2007 before acquiring full ownership in 2013. The lifetime Utah resident, Hansen is the founder and CEO of The Wasatch Group.


He served nine years on the State’s Board of the Department of Business and Economic Development under Gov. Michael Leavitt.




Sacramento Republic

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Prior to Sacramento being awarded their long-awaited MLS team, Ron Burkle (above, right) joined the ownership group to elevate the bid to the next level. Burkle, who is also part-owner of the Pittsburgh Penguins, is co-founder and managing partner of The Yucaipa Companies, LLC, a private equity and venture capital firm.


Republic FC will join MLS in 2022. Behind Burkle sits a strong local ownership group, led by long-time Sacramento area business leader Kevin Nagle (above, left) who has led the city's bid for an MLS franchise since 2014. Also joining the group is Matt Alvarez (above, center), an entertainment executive and producer known for his work on the Academy Award-nominated “Straight Outta Compton” and several popular film franchises.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - SJ

San Jose Earthquakes

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California-based businessman John Fisher partnered with Lew Wolff to bring the San Jose Earthquakes back for the 2008 season.


Fisher's family founded clothing retailer Gap and he sits on the company's board of directors. In addition to being the president of investment group Pisces Inc. and founding partner of investment company Sansome Partners, Fisher is the owner of baseball's Oakland Athletics and he has a stake in Scottish club Celtic Glasgow.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - SEA

Seattle Sounders FC

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A key name in Seattle soccer, Adrian Hanauer became the managing partner for the USL Seattle Sounders in 2002 and guided the club to MLS, with their inaugural season in 2009. He was an early investor in aQuantive, an online-based advertising company that was later sold to Microsoft. Hanauer is also a minority owner of Seattle's NHL expansion franchise, which will join the league in 2021.


Behind Hanauer, there are a number of notable names in the club's ownership. Seattle Seahawks superstar Russel Wilson and his wife Ciara are part of the group, as is actor and producer Drew Carey.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - SKC

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Sporting Kansas City

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Sporting Kansas City's five principal owners in a 2011 photo (left to right): Greg Maday, Robb Heineman, the late Neal Patterson, Cliff Illig and Pat Curran.


Sporting Club, the company that owns Sporting Kansas City, purchased SKC in 2006 and is made up of five principal owners: The Patterson Family; Cliff Illig, vice chairman and co-founder of Cerner Corporation; Robb Heineman, co-founder of technology company FanThreeSixty; Greg Maday, chairman and chief executive officer of SpecChem, LLC., and founding partner of Rock Island Capital, LLC.; and Pat Curran, founder and principal of C3 Holdings.


The group oversaw the club's rebranding from the Kansas City Wizards to Sporting Kansas City as well as the construction of Children's Mercy Park.




St. Louis

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The first female majority-owned club in MLS and one of few in professional sports, St. Louis is already making history.


The group includes Carolyn Kindle Betz, the president of Enterprise Holdings Foundation and the granddaughter of Enterprise Rent-A-Car founder Jack Taylor. She is joined by six other female members of the Taylor family and Jim Kavanaugh, the CEO of World Wide Technology who had a short stint in the Major Indoor Soccer League.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - TOR

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Toronto FC

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Owned by Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment, Toronto FC are part of a larger family which also includes the Toronto Maple Leafs and Toronto Raptors. MLSE has seen great success in recent years, with TFC's exploits on top of the Raptors' first NBA championship last summer.


Larry Tannenbaum (above with Michael Bradley), the chairman of MLSE, was born in Toronto and helped lead the effort to bring the NBA to Toronto. He is a member of the board of the Hockey Hall of Fame.



MLS team owners: Charlotte's David Tepper joins burgeoning list - VAN

Vancouver Whitecaps FC

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In 2002, Greg Kerfoot bought the Vancouver Whitecaps and saved the club from extinction. The Vancouver businessman, who made his fortune in computers, guided the club to their MLS debut in 2011.


Jeff Mallett (above), the Whitecaps co-owner, began his career at Yahoo! where he served as president and COO from 1995-2002. He is also from Vancouver.


Former NBA superstar Steve Nash is also part of the ownership group.

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