could this be possible? (purchasing sports franchise with internet paypal donations)

Let’s say I wanted to buy a sports franchise. But of course, I don’t have the money. What I would like to do instead is get people to donate as much as they can and give them proportionate “shares” in the club. This would be sort of like the Green Bay Packer model, where shares of Packer stock are owned by ordinary citizens.

Anyway, let’s say I get the legalize in place that would state that the organization would be run by professionals, but we would lay out a number of fundamental organizational “practices” that would guarantee that certain things would be done. Meeting a minimum payroll, for example.

So, I set up a website, with paypal (or some sort of bank account) that would hold the money in escrow. This would allow those people that donated their money the ability to get their money back in case we couldn’t raise enough money. They’d get their investment back with small interest, the account could be closed and everyone goes home happy if it doesn’t work.

But let’s say it does work. I am able to collect the 500 million or so I would need to buy a franchise. What are the obsticals?

  1. would a bank hold this money in escrow? If so, what kind of fee (if any) would they charge for this? I figure if the money is electronically transferred, account maintenance costs would be minimal at best.

  2. If I raised the cash and bought a team, of course I would have to have some sort of benefit for the “shareholder”. What that is I have yet to define.

  3. Has this ever been tried before, and if so how’d it work out? If not, why not?

I’m sure there are a thousand legal problems, but I really can’t think of many. As long as I explain to the investors what their money will buy, and stick to my committment. If I couldn’t buy a team after a set period of time, they would get as much of their money back as possible (minus any bank or legal fees). My goal would not be to take their money and run. The goal would be to buy a franchise with small and large investors alike. If I could define the percentage of money they would be putting to risk (either they would get all of their investment back, or 95 cents on every dollar… whatever the contract called for), could this work?

I’m looking for factual answers, but if this needs to be moved to IMHO, I understand.


Sell pixels on a web site page(s) to raise the money.

** Million Dollar Home Page **

One legal problem is that some leagues do not allow public stock ownership of franchises.

I’m not sure. Was I just wooshed?

This is a great idea! Alas, I didn’t think of it first.

This is probably the biggest problem to my idea. I suspect that all leagues have this in their by-laws. I’m not even sure the Packers are run as a public entity anymore. But I’m guessing that the NFL has changed their rules to allow the grandfathering of something like the Packers arrangement.