Liverpool takeover: Harris Blitzer Sports already have interesting link to FSG

Harris Blitzer Sports & Entertainment are reportedly interested in a Liverpool takeover from Fenway Sports Group.

Harris Blitzer Sports & Entertainment (HBSE) are one of the parties reportedly interested in a potential Liverpool takeover.

After Fenway Sports Group made the decision to put the Reds up for sale, having owned the club since 2010, several possible names have been mentioned.

The latest is HBSE, with CBS reporter Ben Jacobs claiming that the group - headed by Joshua Harris and David Blitzer - are a genuine suitor to purchase Liverpool.

Indeed, the pair were in the reckoning to buy Chelsea earlier this year. The pair were the principal backers of Sir Martin Broughton’s bid for Chelsea in May before a Todd Boehly-led consortium bought the club off Roman Abramovich.

While FSG already own American sports teams the Boston Red Sox (Major League Baseball) and the Pittsburgh Penguins (National League Hockey), HBSE own the Philidelphia 76ers (National Basketball Association) and New Jersey Devils (National League Hockey).

Harris and Blitzer also have each held an 18% stake in Liverpool’s Premier League rivals Crystal Palace since 2015. If they wanted to complete an Anfield takeover, the pair would have to sell their shares in Palace.

It remains to be seen whether HBSE will pursue a concrete move for the Reds. But, as things stand they do have an interesting link to FSG via Arctos Sports Partners - a private equity firm to sports franchise owners.

According to their website, Arctos’ mission ‘is to partner with owners and leagues to increase liquidity and financial flexibility for ownership groups using a collaborative, thought partner approach’.

In 2020, Arctos acquired a minority stake in FSG and registered as a partner on their website. And in June 2022, Arctos agreed to purchase more than a 5% stake in HBSE over an undisclosed period as per Sportico. That valued HBSE at $3 billion.

Sportico estimates Arctos’ total investment assets at $5 billion and has 25 investments in 18 sports franchises.

Blitzer took over MLS side Real Salt Lake at the start of this year, with Arctos a limited partner.