Variety Once Again Names O’Melveny’s Baker, Bartie, and Raij to its ‘Dealmakers Elite New York’ List

September 28, 2018


LOS ANGELES—September 28, 2018—O’Melveny Sports Industry Group Co-Chairs Charles “Chuck” Baker, Jared Bartie, and Irwin Raij have been named to Variety’s “Dealmakers Elite New York 2018,” which recognizes the attorneys and executives behind the most significant transactions in the entertainment industry. This marks the second year in a row the three made the list.

Variety cited Baker and Raij for their role in representing the financer David Tepper in buying the NFL’s Carolina Panthers for US$2.27 billion. The publication also cited Baker’s work advising investors including Hollywood executives Jerry Bruckheimer and Harry Sloan in their efforts to secure an NHL Seattle expansion team. Baker told Variety publication that “finance professionals, both private equity and hedge, continue to invest in sports teams and ancillary opportunities” thanks to skyrocketing valuations over the last two decades.

The publication singled out Bartie for representing Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones and others in acquiring the esports company Complexity Gaming. Bartie observed the “global appeal” of esports and its ability to capture “coveted younger viewership” has helped drive the escalating price of sports franchises.

Variety pointed to Raij’s work on behalf of Spanish soccer league La Liga on a North American licensing rights deal. Raij noted that the rising value of media rights, newly legalized sports gambling, and growing stadium/ancillary revenues all help “drive up franchise prices.”

O’Melveny’s Sports Industry Group has more than a half-century’s experience devising innovative strategies that help the biggest names in sports achieve critical legal and business objectives. The group handles many of the legal matters that draw coverage in sports pages everywhere—billion-dollar acquisitions and dispositions of professional sports teams; cutting-edge media and licensing arrangements; stadium development, financings, and naming rights; sponsorships and endorsements; and strategic joint ventures.

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Christopher Rieck
O’Melveny & Myers LLP
+1 212 326 2218