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Thomas Dundon (born 1972) is an American businessman, specializing in financial services and entertainment. He serves as Chairman and Managing Partner of Dundon Capital Partners in Dallas, Texas, and is majority owner and chief executive officer of the Carolina Hurricanes of the National Hockey League as well as the chairman of the now-defunct Alliance of American Football.

Thomas Dundon
Born1972 (age 46–47)
ResidenceDallas, Texas, U.S.
NationalityAmerican
Alma materSouthern Methodist University (B.S.)
OccupationFinancial services
Entertainment
Professional sports owner
Known forOwner of the Carolina Hurricanes
Chairman and Managing Partner of Dundon Capital Partners
Chairman of the Alliance of American Football
Majority owner of TopGolf

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Early life and careerEdit

Dundon was born in New York and raised in Texas. He attended Southern Methodist University, where he earned a bachelor's degree in economics in 1993 and served as president of Phi Gamma Delta. He soon after operated a restaurant in Fort Worth, Texas. Later, with a number of partners, he co-founded a business focused primarily on subprime automobile financing called Drive Financial Services, LP, which eventually became Santander Consumer USA, a large U.S. consumer finance company majority held by Banco Santander. By the time he left in 2015, Dundon served as chairman and chief executive officer of the company. After leaving Santander, Dundon started his own firm Dundon Capital Partners and bought a 33-story building in downtown Dallas, to house it.[1][2] Dundon owns via the firm the majority of Employer Direct, a healthcare services company as well as a stake in Carvana.

Sports investmentsEdit

After leaving Santander, Dundon purchased Trinity Forest Golf Club in Dallas and in 2011, fifty-five percent of TopGolf.

Carolina HurricanesEdit

In late 2017, Dundon became involved in purchasing the Carolina Hurricanes of the National Hockey League from owner Peter Karmanos Jr. who had owned the team since it was the Hartford Whalers.[3] Dundon became majority owner of the team on January 11, 2018, in a transaction where he purchased 52% of the team and the operating rights to PNC Arena for $420 million.[4]

Alliance of American FootballEdit

On February 19, 2019, the Alliance of American Football announced a $250 million investment by Dundon and named him the new chairman of the league.[5][6] The cash infusion is believed to have saved the league from a short-term financial crisis, as Dundon acknowledged that the AAF did not have enough "money in the bank" to make payroll before he purchased a stake in the league,[7] despite AAF assertions that the payroll issue "was due to a glitch in moving to a new payroll system."[8]

On February 25, 2019, Dundon clarified his previous statements, stating that he had not invested $250 million in the AAF but had set up a line of credit of sorts for up to $250 million, which would only be fully expended if the league pursued an aggressive expansion strategy (earlier reports stated Dundon was specifically interested in an AAF team for Raleigh, North Carolina).[9] Reports at the same time noted that Dundon reserved the right to end his investment at any time.[10][11] Dundon's first publicly visible move as AAF chairman was to move the AAF's championship to the Ford Center at the Star in Frisco, Texas, after meeting with Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones and negotiating the change in venue. The game had already been scheduled for Sam Boyd Stadium in Nevada, and ticket refunds had to be issued for those who already bought tickets for the game.[12] Dundon, according to a press release, saw the AAF becoming a "complementary developmental league for the NFL".[13] He later expressed willingness to shut the league down if the National Football League Players Association did not cooperate with his proposal, which the NFLPA was reluctant to do because of injury concerns.[14] Dundon stated on April 2, confirming an earlier report from Profootballtalk.com, that he was willing to pull his funding from the league before Week 9's games are played that weekend.[15] As of that date, his estimated investment had come to $70 million, almost all of which went to payroll, while vendors largely went unpaid.[16]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "For Dallas' newest billionaire, early failure set stage for success | Business". Dallas News. Retrieved January 17, 2018.
  2. ^ "Tom Dundon | Carolina Hurricanes". Nhl.com. January 11, 2018. Retrieved January 17, 2018.
  3. ^ Rogers Digital Media (November 29, 2017). "Carolina Hurricanes confirm sale talks with Dallas billionaire". Sportsnet.ca. Retrieved January 17, 2018.
  4. ^ Mike Ozanian. "Carolina Hurricanes Sold To Tom Dundon For $420 Million". Forbes.com. Retrieved January 17, 2018.
  5. ^ "Canes' owner invests $250 million, will chair AAF". ESPN.com. February 19, 2019. Retrieved February 19, 2019.
  6. ^ "Carolina Hurricanes owner Tom Dundon commits $250M to AAF". NFL.com. Retrieved February 19, 2019.
  7. ^ Hookstead, David (February 20, 2019). Tom Dundon Says The AAF Will Financially Be Fine For A 'Long Time' After $250 Million Investment. The Daily Caller. Retrieved February 20, 2019.
  8. ^ "AAF gets $250 million investment from Hurricanes owner Tom Dundon, dismisses report of financial difficulty". CBS Sports. CBS Interactive. February 19, 2019. Retrieved February 19, 2019.
  9. ^ "Report: AAF was in danger of missing payroll last week before NHL owner invested $250M". sports.yahoo.com. Retrieved April 4, 2019.
  10. ^ Kaplan, Daniel (February 25, 2019). "Tom Dundon Confirms Incremental $250M Investment In AAF". Sports Business Journal. Retrieved February 25, 2019.
  11. ^ "Sources: Dundon Has Committed, Not Yet Invested, Money In AAF". www.sportsbusinessdaily.com. Retrieved April 4, 2019.
  12. ^ Associated Press (March 20, 2019). "AAF shifts title game from Vegas to Frisco, Texas". ESPN. Retrieved March 20, 2019.
  13. ^ "Alliance of American Football". aaf.com. Retrieved March 21, 2019.
  14. ^ Allen, Kevin; Jones, Mike (March 27, 2019). "Majority investor: Alliance of American Football in danger of being discontinued without NFLPA help". USA Today. Retrieved March 27, 2019.
  15. ^ Bianchi, Mike (April 1, 2019). "Orlando Apollos coach Steve Spurrier refuses to believe reports AAF could fold this week". Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved April 2, 2019.
  16. ^ Rovell, Darren (April 2, 2019). "Rovell: AAF Suspending Football Operations Immediately". The Action Network. Retrieved April 2, 2019.

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