Report: MLS considering change to ownership rules, allow investment funds to own minority stakes

MLS is considering a change to its ownership rules that would allow investment funds to take minority stakes in clubs, according to a report from Sportico on Friday. Citing two people familiar with the plans, the report states that the change is likely to go forward.

Last year Major League Baseball made a similar move, allowing investment funds to acquire minority stakes in multiple teams. The NBA is also exploring private equity investment through a relationship with Dyal Capital Partners, a division of investment management company Neuberger Berman.

The move by MLS would reportedly allow clubs to raise funds at a time when sports teams and leagues across the United States have seen their revenues negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The 25th MLS season was suspended on March 12 due to the impact of the pandemic. Play resumed this week with the start of the MLS is Back Tournament at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Orlando, Florida.