Jerry Richardson, the founding owner of the Carolina Panthers, has agreed to sell the team to David A. Tepper, a billionaire hedge fund owner, for a record-setting amount of at least $2.2 billion.
That keeps the transaction on track to be approved at the owners meeting in Atlanta next week.
This story will be updated. That will set a record for the highest sale price for an National Football League team, surpassing the $1.4 billion that the Buffalo Bills were sold for in 2014.
Tepper is now a minority owner of the Pittsburgh Steelers, so for this deal to go through, Tepper will have to sell his stake in the Steelers. And with Richardson still being investigated for workplace misconduct after last year's reports of sexual and racial harassment, that gave the league a bit of leverage to nudge the process in a certain direction.
Another bidder, Ben Navarro, who owns a financial investment group, was unable to raise the estimated $2.6 billion he was said to have offered. After college, he worked as a credit and securities analyst at Equibank in Pittsburgh before going on to get his MBA at Carnegie Mellon.
Tepper has always been involved in charitable organizations in the different areas where he has planted roots, including Pittsburgh, New Jersey and Miami. "They remind me of my original hometown, Pittsburgh", Tepper told the Observer in April.