NY Mets Owner Buys $52B Stake in Las Vegas Sphere

Steve Cohen

Steve Cohen, the owner of the New York Mets, has expanded his investment portfolio beyond baseballs to include a 5.5% stake in the Las Vegas Sphere, according to Sportico.

Cohen acquired 1.56 million shares of Sphere Entertainment, the company behind the $2.3 billion spherical concert venue, which opened last September under the direction of majority owner James Dolan.

The new investment was disclosed through a Schedule 13G filing, mandated for investment firms with a stake exceeding 5% in a company’s total stock. While the filing did not specify Cohen’s purchase price, the current value of 1.56 million shares is approximately $52 billion.

Strategic Investment

Cohen made this purchase in the second quarter of this year via his Point72 Asset Management hedge fund. This marks Point72’s second foray into the Sphere; they previously held 262,102 shares before selling them in the first quarter of 2024.

This significant cash infusion arrives at a critical juncture. Dolan is reportedly in negotiations to secure residencies for top-tier acts like Beyoncé, Harry Styles, Lady Gaga, and the Eagles, who recently announced a 12-date residency this fall.

The Eagles will be the Sphere’s third residency act, following Dead & Company with 24 shows and U2 with 40 shows.

Financial Implications

The lucrative deal given to U2, which included 90% of ticket sales and $10 million for a dedicated video production, has set a high bar for other A-list performers, potentially straining the Sphere’s finances.

However, the Sphere’s primary revenue source is its movie screenings rather than concert performances. Darren Aronofsky’s sci-fi film “Postcards from Earth” generated over $1 million in average daily ticket sales, totaling $100.5 million in revenue from 257 screenings last quarter.

Ownership Dynamics

Dolan and his family still retain a controlling interest in Sphere Entertainment with 6.9 million shares. However, Cohen’s investment strategy often hints at a desire for greater control. He initially acquired an 8% stake in the Mets in 2012 for $40 million and then bought an additional 89% in 2020 for $2.4 billion, marking one of the largest transactions in professional sports history.

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