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Chicago Cubs’ Former Owner Partly Dodges Tax Bill Over Sale

Oct. 26, 2021, 11:38 PM

The 2009 sale of the Chicago Cubs by Tribune Media Co. was structured in a way where most, but not all, of the proceeds are nontaxable distributions of debt, the U.S. Tax Court ruled.

The Tuesday decision was a mixed result for the IRS, which argued that the debt was taxable.

During the sale year, Tribune formed Chicago Baseball Holdings with the Cubs’ buyer, businessman Thomas S. Ricketts, in order to sell the franchise in a “disguised sale,” transferring the team to the partner for cash that was to be distributed to Tribune. CBH borrowed over $420 million to complete ...