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Josh Harris Group Buys Washington Commanders, Rids NFL of Dan Snyder

Last Updated: July 1, 2023
Joined by partners Mitchell Rales and Magic Johnson, the 76ers, Devils, and Crystal Palace FC co-owner ends a scandal-plagued NFL era in the nation’s capital.

Say it with me, football fans: Daniel Snyder is out of the NFL forever.

On Thursday, Sportico was first to report that Daniel and Tanya Snyder were in agreement to sell the NFL’s Washington Commanders to an investor group led by Josh Harris, co-founder of Apollo Global Management and co-owner of the NBA’s Philadelphia 76ers, NHL’s New Jersey Devils, and Premier League’s Crystal Palace. NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport later confirmed.

According to reporting from ESPN’s Adam Schefter, Canadian real estate and private equity mogul Steve Apostolopoulos was the last remaining Commanders bidder to fall by the wayside.

The final Commanders sale price is understood to be approximately $6 billion, the highest sum ever paid for a sports franchise.

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Snyder purchased the Commanders in 1999 for $800 million. Since then, the franchise — as well as its now-departing majority owner himself — has been plagued by a series of scandals and missteps, including:

Exhale, NFL fans. Exhale. The Snyder scourge is finally abating after more than two full decades of teeth-gnashing struggle.

Harris, born in the DC suburbs of Maryland and a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and Harvard Business School, co-founded private equity firm Apollo Global Management in 1990. The company now manages over $500 billion in assets. Alongside David Blitzer, he led the purchase of the Philadelphia 76ers in 2011 and the New Jersey Devils in 2013. Two years later, the duo bought 18% of South London soccer club Crystal Palace FC.

By 2017, the prolific sports investment group coalesced formally as Harris Blitzer Sports & Entertainment in 2017. Its portfolio additionally includes the 76ers G League affiliate, the Delaware Blue Coats. Harris previously owned a small minority stake in the Pittsburgh Steelers and was part of an unsuccessful bid to buy the Denver Broncos in 2022.

He’s joined in this Commanders triumph by Mitchell Rales, an art gallery entrepreneur and co-founder of global conglomerate Danaher Corporation, and Magic Johnson, the Lakers legend and Basketball Hall of Famer whose own sports portfolio includes investments in MLB’s Los Angeles Dodgers, WNBA’s Los Angeles Sparks, and Major League Soccer’s LAFC.


It’s a new day in the Swampland.

About The Author
Sam Dunn
Sam Dunn
Sam Dunn is the Managing Editor of Boardroom. Before joining the team, he was an editor and multimedia talent for several sports and culture verticals at Minute Media and an editor, reporter, and site manager at SB Nation. A specialist in content strategy, copywriting, and SEO, he has additionally worked as a digital consultant in the corporate services, retail, and tech industries. He cannot be expected to be impartial on any matter regarding the Florida Gators or Atlanta Braves. Follow him on Twitter @RealFakeSamDunn.