Ending nearly seven years of uncertainty for the US major league baseball's Kansas City Royals, owners voted today to approve the $96 million sale of the team to chairman David Glass.
Owners took up the Royals sale at the start of their two-day meeting, approving it within the first hour.
While there was no immediate announcement, the approval was confirmed during a brief break by one owner, speaking on the condition he not be identified.
"It seems like a slam dunk," Royals president Mike Herman said before the meeting began. "It will be unanimously approved."
Glass has been the Royals chairman since September 1993, about six weeks following the death of founding owner Ewing Kauffman. Under Kauffman's succession plan, the team was put up for bidding to Kansas City-area individuals and companies, with the money going to charity.
Last September, baseball owners refused to approve a $75 million purchase by New York lawyer Miles Prentice.
Glass, the former chief executive officer of Wal-Mart Stores Inc., then re-entered the bidding. He said the Royals will be run a little differently once he's the owner, not just the chairman.
"There have been lots of decisions we had to defer during the period of time we thought we would shortly have an owner," he said. "We probably have fewer dollars committed beyond this year than any other team in baseball. That was sort of deferring for the person who owns the team so they can make that decision."
Before discussing league realignment and the Royals, owners had a bigger concern today.
"What's the market doing?" more than one asked in the hallway.
After learning that the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the NASDAQ composite index each posted gains of 200-plus points, they got down to business.
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