The buyers of the Phoenix Coyotes signed their new lease on Monday guaranteeing them $15 million a year in public operating subsidies in exchange for mumble mumble something something, and the city of Glendale is already reaping the rewards:
At the beginning of the year, Glendale, Arizona restructured the debt it took on for Jobing.com Arena, issuing $39.5 million of senior-lien notes backed by the city’s excise tax. Proceeds of the bonds will refund debt used to build the $220 million arena (Glendale still owes $152 million) that opened in 2003, and are structured to provide budget relief by reducing near-term debt service requirements. Those bonds have been hammered, with their yield jumping to $4.35% from 3.33% since January.
Much of that jump came before Monday, no doubt, but Forbes’ Michael Ozanian says bond buyers are looking askance at the Glendale arena bonds with good reason: Not only can the Coyotes leave after five years if they’re losing money, but even the shares of arena revenue that new owners George Gosbee and Anthony Le Blanc have promised to share with Glendale aren’t guaranteed. But hey, at least the struggling mom-and-pop businesses at the local mall like Johnny Rockets and the Cold Stone Creamery can rest assured of some of the Coyotes’ 500,000 fans a year wandering past before or after games. For the next five years, anyway. Unless there’s another lockout.