Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Another "American" owner?

After Renaud Lavoie of RDS reported Tuesday of Graeme Roustan's interest in purchasing the Habs, Eric Engels of is reporting today that Roustan has a standing offer to purchase the club and the Bell Centre which is going through the approval process right now. In fact, Roustan's name has been floating about for a few weeks now, but it appears to be picking up some steam.
It was interesting to note how RDS headlined its story as "an American" being interested in buying the Canadiens, considering Roustan was born in Sherbrooke and holds a Canadian passport. Maybe it's because Roustan's name doesn't roll off the tongue quite as well in French as Savard or Péladeau.

In any case, I'm personally not sure if Roustan is ahead of Serge Savard's group or the Quebecor bid of Pierre-Karl Péladeau, but seeing as I don't know a whole lot about him I thought I'd check out what he's about. Alex Kovalev will be happy to learn he's a fellow pilot.
I've pasted his bio from the Roustan Capital web site below (note the sentence I have taken the liberty of emphasizing by putting it in bold):
W. Graeme Roustan leads all mergers and acquisitions, recapitalizations, project finance and restructurings for his wholly owned entity, Roustan Capital in the United States. Mr. Roustan also has significant experience in cross-border investments in Canada, Europe, the Middle East and Asia and continues to search out merger and acquisition opportunities that are a good fit in related entities for his portfolio.
Mr. Roustan was born in Sherbrooke Quebec Canada in 1960 and grew up in Montreal where he played hockey from the age of three. In 1988, Mr. Roustan won a visa in the Department of Justice lottery program and immigrated to the United States in 1988. In 1989, Mr. Roustan was hired on in the San Jose California office of a Wall Street firm while co-founding "Pro Hockey San Jose", a grass roots organization formed to lobby the NHL to locate an expansion franchise in the Bay Area and another group to purchase the franchise. Since that time, Mr. Roustan has placed millions of dollars for clients acting as a private investment banker and for his own portfolio of companies primarily in the arena industry. Mr. Roustan has significant business interests in the United States, Canada, the European Union, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Dubai in the United Arab Emirates.
Mr. Roustan is a Florida resident and a dual citizen holding passports from Canada and the United States. In 2005, Mr. Roustan accomplished a life-long dream and became a private pilot. Mr. Roustan purchased a new Cirrus SR22-GTS aircraft and christened it "IVY" after his mother. Mr. Roustan now pilots his Cirrus within North America.
In 1992, Mr. Roustan established Hockey for the Homeless, a 501(c)3 Not For Profit which has produced tournaments and a celebrity hockey game as fundraisers with proceeds going to other entities like Habitat for Humanity. Presently, Roustan Capital provides information technology support free of charge to Equikids to further enable that 501(c)3 Not For Profit, to raise funds for its disabled children therapeutic program in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia.
In 2008, Mr. Roustan, along with Kohlberg & Company, acquired Bauer Hockey from Nike Bauer Hockey Inc. Mr. Roustan currently holds the position of Chairman.


pmk said...

I don't get RDS'S reaction. I mean what's not to like? Rich, hockey background, part owner of BAUER (!), and from Quebec. Sounds good to me...

Anonymous said...

...and his name rhymes with Boustan, which will please Komisarek, Higgins and the Kostitsyns- all of whom have drunken portraits pinned up in the late-nite falafel joint.

Laydownthelaw said...

And he pilots his own aircrafts, like some guy of ours...

Sliver24 said...

This would be a nightmare for some of our more nationalist-minded compatriots. He doesn't fit the pur laine definition of Quebecois so he's an outsider, but the fact that he's actually from Quebec means they won't be able to bitch about it.

It's typical, though. I've been told on more than one occasion, including once by a cop as he was writing me a ticket, that my last name is "pas bein Québecois." The best part about it is the fact that the francophone cop's last name was Smith (pronounced "Smit" I'm assuming), an irony I managed to keep to myself at the time.

They'd probably rather have Don Cherry as an owner. At least that way they'd have an easy scapegoat.

I'm rooting for this Roustan guy.

Anonymous said...

Roustan United facing claims, delinquent taxes
Sandra K. Reabuck
EBENSBURG, Apr 02, 2009 (Tribune-Democrat - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) --
Roustan United, the Richland Township-based company that hoped to be part of a deal to manage the Cambria County War Memorial Arena, is facing financial woes, with civil financial claims totaling more than $120,000 in Cambria County Court and an even higher amount due in delinquent property taxes.
The company is in arrears on payments it's making on 2006 real estate taxes.
In addition, more than $140,000 is owed on delinquent property taxes for 2007 and 2008, the county tax claim office said.
And, Roustan settled another lawsuit last June for $12,612 by agreeing to make staggered payments to Lakeland Plastics Inc., of Pittsburgh, for plastic spacer strips and other products, according to records in the county prothonotary's office.
Roustan has been managing the arena's primary tenant, the Johnstown Chiefs hockey team.
Last year, it partnered with Global Spectrum of Philadelphia, one of the nation's leading managers of public assembly venues, in submitting a proposal to the county commissioners for the management of the War Memorial Arena.
On Monday, the county commissioners said that any deal with Roustan and Global was dead.
The commissioners did not discuss Roustan's financial problems, but said there were several confidential business considerations they considered.
Likewise, Roustan President Scott Branovan would not discuss the lawsuits and delinquent taxes.
On March 26, Advantage Staffing Inc. of Altoona obtained a $49,944 default judgment against Roustan United and Burley's Rink Supply of Salix for temporary staffing services.
Maintenance services and a laborer were supplied, according to the civil lawsuit filed by Advantage in April.
A lien for $3,734 was filed by the state's Unemployment Compensation Fund against Roustan United on Sept. 19. That amount remained outstanding from $10,218 owed, the state said.
This month, two new lawsuits were filed against Roustan.
Adex Sales of Westbank, B.C., Canada, is suing for $45,580 for glass panels to Roustan at facilities in Meadville, and Northbrook, Ill. EDC Industries of Elk Grove, Ill., is suing for $21,010 for merchandise allegedly supplied to Roustan.
The tax claim bureau said that the delinquent taxes are due on Roustan's Planet Ice property at 195 Jari Drive.
The company went on a payment plan last summer, agreeing to pay $6,399 a month. Six payments were made, with six remaining.
No payments were made in January, February or March, Joanne Ranck, assistant director, said.
The original amount delinquent for 2006, with interest and penalties, was $76,792 in property taxes owed to the county, Richland School District and Richland Township, she said.
Ranck said that Roustan also owes $71,518 in delinquent tax for 2007 and $69,261 for 2008.
A story in Tuesday's editions incorrectly identified the owner of Planet Ice property as Roustan United, when records at the courthouse identify the owner as Roustan Johnstown, a limited liability corporation. Information filed with the Pennsylvania Department of State lists Walter G. Roustan as president of Roustan Johnstown. Roustan United leases space in the buidling, along with Roustan Planet Ice Inc. Roustan United's chairman is W. Graeme Roustan.

Anonymous said...

Actually Roustan is a French name, originating in France. The pequistes should know this already.

Give the guy a break he's done well for himself since starting out as a waiter in the early 80's. He's obviously a good buisiness man.

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