San Diego Business Journal

Qualcomm CEO Joins Investor Group Seeking to Buy Sacramento Kings

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Qualcomm CEO Paul Jacobs joined an investor group that’s trying to purchase the Sacramento Kings basketball team and build a new arena there, according to several media reports.

The company does not have a comment regarding the news, according to a Qualcomm spokesperson.

Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson announced that Jacobs joined a group that includes billionaire Ron Burkle, Mark Mastrov, founder of 24 Hour Fitness, and TIBCO Software CEO Vivek Ranadive to build a new, $447 million arena in downtown Sacramento, and purchase the struggling sports club.

However, the owner of the Kings, the Maloof family, has signed an agreement to sell the franchise to a group from Seattle that includes hedge fund owner Chris Hanson, Steve Ballmer, CEO of Microsoft, and a couple of members of the Nordstrom family. The group would move the franchise to Seattle.

The group has also agreed to help pay for a new arena for the team, which would be renamed the SuperSonics, in the same area of the city where the NFL’s Seahawks and MLB’s Mariners have sports stadiums.

Seattle has been lacking a basketball team since 2008 after the team’s new majority owner, Clayton Bennett, relocated the team to Oklahoma City, Okla., and renamed it the Thunder.

— Mike Allen