Monumental Sports & Entertainment (MSE) today announced the closing of its previously announced acquisition of NBCUniversal’s 67% stake in NBC Sports Washington from Comcast Corporation. MSE, which acquired 33% of NBC Sports Washington in 2016, now has full ownership of the regional sports network.
NBC Sports Washington is the exclusive local TV rightsholder for Washington Wizards and Washington Capitals games. The network is available throughout the District of Columbia, Maryland and Virginia, as well as parts of Pennsylvania, Delaware and West Virginia. Launched as Home Team Sports in April 1984, the network has served as the Capitals’ and Wizards’ regional TV partner since its inception.
Zach Leonsis, President of Media & New Enterprises at MSE, commented, “We are incredibly pleased to announce that we have officially closed on our transaction to acquire NBC Sports Washington. We look forward to welcoming all of our new teammates into the Monumental family, embarking on some exciting work to integrate the network into our platform, and building a best-in-class experience for our fans.”
As part of the transaction, NBCUniversal will continue to assist in the operation of the network by providing corporate and shared services, including distribution, technical resources and production facilities, for up to 18 months. NBC Sports Regional Networks, part of NBCUniversal Local, operates a portfolio of six regional sports networks.
NBC Sports Washington is expected to retain its current name and branding through the 2022-23 season. A network re-brand is anticipated for the 2023-24 Capitals and Wizards seasons.
MSE’s platform encompasses five professional sports teams: the NHL’s Washington Capitals, the NBA’s Washington Wizards, the WNBA’s Washington Mystics, the NBA G League’s Capital City Go-Go and the NBA 2K League’s Wizards District Gaming. In addition, MSE owns and operates Capital One Arena and manages the MedStar Capitals Iceplex (practice facility for the Capitals), MedStar Health Performance Center (practice facility for the Wizards, Mystics and Go-Go), and EagleBank Arena (live performance venue on the campus of George Mason University in Virginia). Further, MSE was a first mover in the sports betting space, opening with Caesars Entertainment the first ever in-arena retail location in North America at Capital One Arena in 2020. It also launched a first-of-its kind regional sports streaming service for local and high school sports and exclusive Capitals, Wizards and Mystics content with Monumental Sports Network in 2016. MSE’s broad media reach includes the social media channels of its sports teams and corporate properties – not only in English but also Japanese, Hebrew and Mandarin and coming soon in Spanish and Arabic – as well as native content web articles, video productions and streaming shows, radio broadcasts, podcasts, in-arena signage, and out-of-home video boards.
LionTree served as MSE’s exclusive financial advisor on the transaction. Financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.