Dan Beckerman has replaced Tim Leiweke as president and CEO of Anschutz Entertainment Group after plans to sell the company, which is one of the leading players in the development of Major League Soccer (MLS), were scrapped.
In September, Phil Anschutz put AEG up for sale, but the billionaire businessman yesterday said that he had decided to take the company off the market. Anshchutz will retain control of AEG and has brought an end to Leiweke’s 17-year spell at the helm. At one time, AEG owned as many as five MLS franchises as it supported the development of the league. It has since sold the Chicago Fire, New York/New Jersey MetroStars and D.C. United, but still owns the Los Angeles Galaxy and holds a majority stake in the Houston Dynamo.
“From the beginning of the sales process, we have made it clear to our employees and partners throughout the world that unless the right buyer came forward with a transaction on acceptable terms were would not sell the company,” Anschutz said. “We will continue to set the standards in the industries in which AEG operates, bringing our unique vision and development model to entertainment locations throughout the world.”
Anschutz had been seeking at least $8 billion for the business. Colony Capital LLC, Guggenheim Partners LLC and Los Angeles biotech billionaire Patrick Soon-Shiong made second-round bids of under US$7 billion for AEG in February, according to Reuters. Anschutz said that he would take a more active role in running the company.