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Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Steve Cohen, a hedge fund billionaire from Long Island, has reached an agreement to buy the Mets.

Details: Cohen will own 95% of the team, with the Wilpon and Katz families retaining the other 5%. The sale values the Mets at $2.42 billion, per Sportico, making it the most ever paid for an MLB franchise, topping the $2.15 billion paid for the Dodgers and surrounding real estate in 2012.

  • The deal still requires approval from 23 of the other 29 MLB owners, who will likely vote at their regularly-scheduled meeting in November.

Why it matters: Cohen has a net worth of $14.5 billion, which would make him the second-richest owner in American sports behind Steve Ballmer ($69 billion).

  • It would also make him wealthier than the next three richest MLB owners, combined: Ted Lerner, Nationals ($4.8 billion); Charles Johnson, Giants ($4.3 billion) and Marian Ilitch, Tigers ($4 billion), per Forbes.
  • Some owners "may be alarmed by Cohen's vast resources and his ability to single-handedly outspend them and raise player salaries in general," notes NYT's David Waldstein.
  • Yes, but: The increased valuation of the Mets through the sale will increase the value of other teams, too, so something tells me they'll be more than comfortable approving the sale.

The backdrop: Cohen previously reached an agreement to buy the Mets late last year, but it fell apart in January over who would control the team during a five-year interim period after the sale.📚

Go deeper: "Black Edge" documents the rise and fall of SAC Capital Advisors, Cohen's previous hedge fund which in 2013 pleaded guilty to criminal fraud charges.

Go deeper

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
Dec 1, 2020 - Economy & Business

Airbnb seeking $2.6 billion in IPO

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Hospitality giant Airbnb on Tuesday set terms for its upcoming IPO, saying it plans to raise up to $2.6 billion.

Big number: The company would have an initial market cap of $28 billion, or an enterprise value of around $32 billion, were it to price shares in the middle of its proposed price range of $44-$50 per share.

Go deeper: Airbnb files for long-awaited IPO

2 hours ago - World

U.S: Nord Stream 2 "will not move forward" if Russia invades Ukraine

U.S. State Department spokesperson Ned Price during a press briefing at the State Department in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday. Photo: Kevin Lamarque/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

The U.S. will make sure the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project between Russia and Germany won't go ahead if Russian troops invade Ukraine, State Department spokesperson Ned Price told NPR on Wednesday.

Why it matters: Germany's ambassador to the U.S. appeared to support Price's strong rhetoric on the strategically significant pipeline that would circumvent Ukrainian transit infrastructure and deliver Russian gas directly to Germany, eliminating one of the last deterrents Ukraine has against an invasion, per Axios' Zachary Basu.

Scoop: Stephanie Ruhle to replace Brian Williams on MSNBC

Photo: Nathan Congleton/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images via Getty Images

MSNBC will soon announce plans to move morning anchor Stephanie Ruhle to the 11 pm ET hour that Brian Williams turned into an elite destination, two sources familiar with the move tell Axios.

Details: The 9 am ET hour, currently hosted by Ruhle, will become part of MSNBC's flagship morning show, "Morning Joe," which currently runs from 6 am to 9 am ET.