Oakland Raiders find new investor for Las Vegas
After their original investors pulled out, the Oakland Raiders have now secured Bank of America as their new investor to help finance their proposed $1.9 billion stadium in Las Vegas.
The team is currently using the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum along with the Oakland A’s, making it the only stadium used by both an NFL team and a Major League Baseball team. The Raiders have been searching for a new stadium for years, since the Oakland Coliseum isn’t able to generate the revenue for the team that a modern stadium could.
The Raiders were relying on a $650 million investment from their backers Goldman Sachs and casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, but both withdrew their investment in January. Adelson withdrew his backing after a disagreement with the team, and Goldman Sachs, a longtime associate with Adelson, withdrew theirs shortly after.
The state of Nevada has committed to paying $750 million towards the new stadium, which would be payed off in 30 years via a hotel room tax. The Raiders and NFL will pay $500 million, with the rest coming from the new investors.
The project was temporarily halted after Adelson and Goldman Sachs pulled their investments, but the promise of an investment from Bank of America should be enough to keep the project going.
According to the Las Vegas Sun, Steve Hill, the chairman of the Las Vegas Stadium Authority, said the investment would be enough to push the project forward.
“I don’t know what the exact terms are and their commitment to the Raiders, but my understanding is it’s enough to allow the stadium to be financed fully,” Hill said.
The 65,000-seat stadium is set to open for the 2020 season, but before the team can make the move official, they need approval from 24 of the 32 owners. The team is hoping to get the NFL’s permission during the owners meeting in Arizona on March 26-29.
Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf is fighting to keep the Raiders in Oakland. She proposed a plan to the joint stadium and finance committee of the NFL to enhance the Oakland Coliseum for the team to continue to use.
“We made a sound economic case for keeping the Raiders in Oakland through the creation of what could become one of America’s premier mixed-use sporting venues,” Schaaf said in a statement to the press.
Many fans are advocating for the team to stay in Oakland, while others promise to attend games at the new stadium in Las Vegas. In an interview with 95.7 The Game, Raiders quarterback Derek Carr addressed the team’s fans in Oakland.
“We’re still Oakland’s team, no matter where we’re at,” Carr said. “The Bay Area is a special place and these people are special to me. I love it here. But, again, as players, it’s out of our hands.”