As team owner, Stanley Druckenmiller might be another Mark Cuban

By Gary Jacobson

July 12, 2008 at 6:59am

If he is successful in acquiring the Pittsburgh Steelers, what kind of owner will money-managing whiz Stanley Druckenmiller be?

Think Mark Cuban, the fan-friendly owner of the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks, who sits behind his team — and yells — at just about every game.

Druckenmiller, chairman of Duquesne Capital Management and a former associate of George Soros, confirmed that he is interested in buying the Steelers. He said he would keep the team in Pittsburgh and indicated that he wanted the Rooney family to continue to be involved in management, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Druckenmiller, lives in New York with his wife, Fiona, a niece of former Morgan Stanley executive Barton Biggs.

A long-time Steelers fan, Druckenmiller flies to every home game. He tailgates in the parking lot, high-fives surrounding seatmates after big plays, and has been know to wear face paint in Steelers’ colors, black and gold.

“With Stanley Druckenmiller, it’s family first,” said friend and philanthropic partner Geoffrey Canada in an interview with the Tribune-Review in Pittsburgh. “I’d like to say friends come second, but the truth, and he’ll kill me for saying this, is that I’d never come between him and a Steelers’ game.”

Druckenmiller is chairman and Canada is CEO of the Harlem Children’s Zone, which works with at-risk kids.

A major donor to Bowdoin College, his alma mater, Druckenmiller also is a board member of the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, and an advisor to the Children’s Scholarship Fund.

His wife, a former portfolio manager at Dreyfus, is on the boards at the American Museum of Natural History, Parrish Art Museum, Spence School, Carnegie Corporation of New York and a foundation trustee of the New York University School of Medicine.

Forbes estimates Druckenmiller’s personal wealth at $3.5 billion. The magazine says the Steelers are worth $929 million.

According to The Journal, a tentative purchase price being discussed is $800 million, because the team is organized as a C Corporation. If the team were organized as an S Corporation, it could be worth as much as $1 billion, because of tax advantages, The Journal said.

The Rooney family paid $2,500 for its NFL franchise in 1933.

Druckenmiller’s investing style, which he says he borrows from Soros, might give some clues to the style of football he favors:

Be aggressive and (to mix sports metaphors) don’t be afraid to go for the home run.

“The way to attain truly superior long-term returns is to grind it out until you’re up 30 or 40 percent, and then if you have the convictions, go for a 100 percent year,” he told author Jack Schwager in the book, The New Market Wizards.

That sounds like a team fans would love to watch.

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  • #1.   P Brown 02.08.2010

    just a little something to thing about…mainly directed to Mr Stanley Druckenmiller…the Millions that you and your wife has inherit may be of good use to some people facing home forclosure..Please I am facing forclosure as we speak and dont have any family or friends that can help..but I also have some pride and feel if anounce by the media all people would say is something negative..but my request is if you or your business can make a loan for people who cant get loan because of foreclosed credit..I once had two jobs now only one and need to keep my home///example I’m needing 68,000.00 and can pay $650.00 to repay the debt.but wondering if somehow it is a good business scheme. thank you

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