Carolina Hurricanes majority owner Peter Karmanos Jr. said today that an agreement to bring in as many as 20 to 30 local investors in the NHL team could be finalized and announced in the next 30 to 90 days.
Karmanos said the investors — he declined to give any names -- were willing to put up between $1 million and $3 million apiece. He said the group would own roughly 30 percent of the NHL team and that he would continue to control the other 70 percent.
"I've always felt it was important for the team to have local investors," Karmanos said in an interview. "There are a lot of people in Raleigh and the Triangle who believe the team is very important to the community. It will be great for the team, great for the community and further establish hockey in the state of North Carolina."
Karmanos said the success of the NHL All-Star Weekend and hosting the 2011 NHL All-Star Game "certainly highlighted the fact that Raleigh is a hockey market and the Triangle is a hockey market. From the league down to the casual fan, everyone realizes the Hurricanes are a big part of the community."
Karmanos has been seeking investors to buy into the team since the September 2008 death of co-owner Thomas Thewes, a former co-founder and business partner in Detroit-based Compuware. Karmanos hired the New York investment firm Allen & Co. to help with the negotiations.
Karmanos said a $240 million valuation for the team was used in computing the percentage of ownership shares. In an interview during the All-Star Weekend he said an announcement on investors could come in the next three to six months, but the pace of negotiations has quickened.