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Sports financing

We provide comprehensive financing solutions for individual owners, teams and leagues.

Sports Finance
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A growing number of the world’s wealthiest individuals and families have contemplated sports as an asset class in which to invest, albeit a highly specialized one.

If you invest in sports, a strategic banking partner is key to success both on and off the field.

For more than twenty-five years, we have partnered with professional sports teams, leagues, owners and investors, providing consultative advice, liquidity solutions, and investment opportunities as their needs evolve.

We offer both team and league-level financing for acquisition, general corporate and working capital needs, as well as the construction and renovation of stadiums and arenas.

Our treasury management solutions help manage day-to-day finance operations, arena concessions and ticketing, payroll and health benefits, social media and network, foundation and community development needs, and more.

Among our clients are numerous prominent professional sports teams and owners.

We also serve professional sports leagues, including the National Hockey League, National Basketball Association, Major League Baseball and the National Football League.

As the global sports industry continues to grow, we are proud to be a teammate of many of its leading investors.

For over two decades, Citi has partnered with sports teams, leagues, owners and investors worldwide, providing consultative advice and financial strategies to support their evolving needs.

John Farley
Head of Sports Finance - North America
How we serve you
Bespoke solutions
Currently, we have over $1.5 billion in commitments across the four major North American sports leagues.

We provide team and league clients access to both the bank and institutional private placement markets, as well as advice on municipal financing solutions.

Clients have access to a range of traditional and alternative investments and global capital markets, including FX services for international needs and hedging strategies.

Buy-and-sell side advisory services
Our expertise, insights, and connections can assist your strategic positioning every step of the way.

Citi offers a range of services to help teams simplify and streamline the buying and selling process.

In addition to traditional advisory services, we can help teams analyze and identify regional sports network and national media rights opportunities.

Institutional connections
Backed by the global resources and depth of Citi, we partner with our colleagues beyond the Private Bank to provide investment banking solutions, venue construction financing, and introductions to potential buyers and sellers worldwide.

We are well versed in league governance and approval processes, as well as implementing acceptable ownership structures and efficient capital structures.

Meet our people

Jonathan Farley
Head of Sports Finance
North America
For over two decades, Citi has partnered with sports teams, leagues, owners and investors worldwide, providing consultative advice and financial strategies to support their evolving needs.

Jon oversees our offering of financing solutions to professional sports teams and leagues. 

Jon has over 19 years of experience in the sports finance business. He joined Citi Private Bank’s Sports Finance team in 2007.

Prior to Citi, Jon held roles at Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation in project finance and as the Head of the Government and Public/Private Infrastructure Finance group.

He began his career at White & Case as a corporate paralegal and later worked at Banc of America Securities in healthcare corporate finance.

Jon holds a bachelor’s in political science from Haverford College and an MBA from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth.

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Jonathan Farley
Head of Sports Finance
North America

Jon oversees our offering of financing solutions to professional sports teams and leagues. 

Jon has over 19 years of experience in the sports finance business. He joined Citi Private Bank’s Sports Finance team in 2007.

Prior to Citi, Jon held roles at Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation in project finance and as the Head of the Government and Public/Private Infrastructure Finance group.

He began his career at White & Case as a corporate paralegal and later worked at Banc of America Securities in healthcare corporate finance.

Jon holds a bachelor’s in political science from Haverford College and an MBA from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth.

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Global citizens

The Private Bank exists to serve a very special community. Hear the stories of global citizens in their own words.

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Global Citizens
Experience creator
ALAN FAENA

“Giving new life to a city is one of the most beautiful things that anyone can do,” says Alan Faena, as he looks out on the Miami neighbourhood that now bears his name. “It’s one of the things I’m most proud of, both here and back home in Buenos Aires. These are my gifts to the people, not only for today’s generation but also for future generations.” And what a gift the Faena District is indeed.

Spanning five blocks adjacent to the white sands of Miami Beach, the neighborhood is nothing less than an urban oasis of sensory delights. Its buildings – old and new – somehow fuse perfectly with their natural surroundings. Absolutely nothing is mundane here, not even the multistory parking garage, whose exterior could easily pass for that of an ultra-modern cultural center or designer shopping mall. Incidentally, the Faena District also possesses both of those things.

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Global Citizens
Adriana Cisneros
ADRIANA CISNEROS

“I think it’s something like less than one third of family businesses that make it from the first to the second generation and half of those don’t make it to the third generation,” says Adriana Cisneros. “I’m the third generation in our business, so I really hope I’m going to be one of those that survives. Who knows, I might completely mess up, but hopefully not.” Messing up seems a rather unlikely prospect going by Adriana’s record to date. The company is in robust health under her leadership. She has recently returned from a whistle-stop tour of Central and South America, where Cisneros Interactive has become the sole reseller of Facebook in nine countries, the only nations on earth where the social media giant will not manage its own sales.

Facebook chose to work through Cisneros Interactive because it already has the region’s most advanced advertising network. “I started Cisneros Interactive, our digital division four years ago,” says Adriana. “Our aim from the outset has been to create the largest advertising network in Latin America and also the smartest. When we began, others were trying to do similar things, but in a very country-specific way. No one really dared to do it pan-regionally. I used the same architecture to build the business that my father did when he brought satellite television to Latin America three decades ago.”

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Global Citizens
The Brown family & NFI: Keeping North America running
SID BROWN

I went to Georgetown University, where I majored in finance. After graduation, I went to New York, where I worked for two years in investment banking at Morgan Stanley, before attending Harvard Business School. At that point, I had to decide if I wanted to go back into investment banking or return to the family business. It was 1983 and NFI was primarily a trucking business with very small warehousing, real estate, and truck leasing components.

I’m not completely sure exactly what I was thinking at the time, but I probably felt a certain obligation to join the family business. I’d kind of grown up within NFI. From junior high school onwards, I’d always helped out at the company during summer vacations. I’d worked in the maintenance shop and as a loader in the warehouse. We had always discussed business around the family table as far back as I can remember. So I guess you could say it was in my blood.

When I entered the business, I also had two brothers and a sister working alongside me. So I not only had to figure out how to work with my father, but also with my siblings too. As we were coming up through the ranks, our father wisely refused to appoint any of us as his successor. ‘If I pick one of you,’ he said to us, ‘the others will always resent me and our relationship will suffer.’ Instead, he told us to work it out among ourselves, after which he would sell the business to us.

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Global Citizens
Fighting an asymmetric war
MOHAMED AMERSI

Problem-solving and progress-making are second nature to Mohamed Amersi. For many years, he worked as a lawyer for two of the world’s leading firms, focusing upon highly complex equity-related deals. He subsequently set up his own advisory and investment firm specializing in technology, media, and telecoms. In 2015, he and his family created the Amersi Foundation, which particularly supports causes relating to education, poverty, conflict, and social cohesion.

The pandemic has definitely felt like a war at times. But it’s an unusual, asymmetric kind of war. The enemy we’re fighting is one that we can’t see or touch. It doesn’t deploy tanks, fire bullets or have a nuclear arsenal. But it does have hidden bases in pretty much every single part of the Earth. And our current weaponry is unable to defeat this enemy – an enemy that is only interested in killing us.

Like most people, I have had to learn a lot very quickly about COVID-19. I had no in-depth understanding of what ‘triaging,’ ‘social distancing,’ and ‘self-isolation’ were all about. We’ve all learned a completely new lexicon, a new way of living and have a new way of thinking about things. It’s a strange paradox, but we’ve had to stay apart in order to come together against this pandemic.

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