Big 12 explores $1 billion private equity investment, per report

Big 12 members are considering a first in college football history: a major private investment in exchange for a reported 20 percent of its conference.
Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Amid the major changes across college football and other NCAA sports that will include a revenue-sharing plan with players, conferences have been looking for a way to raise more money, and using private equity investment has been one possible course of action.

Now, it appears the Big 12 is contemplating exactly that, as members of the conference are considering a private equity investment of up to $1 billion in exchange for a 15 to 20 percent stake in the league, according to reporting from CBS Sports.

CVC Capital Partners, an investment fund based in Luxembourg, is the firm that would take part in the reported deal. The fund manages $200 billion in investments across the world, its website states.

The cash infusion would be directed in part to conference members to help with rising costs, while the partnership would also give the league access to CVC's investment services and clients.

It is unknown exactly how far along such discussions are, but the talks are "pretty serious," according to the report, which adds that other decision-makers in the Big 12 need "further convincing."

While the Big 12 was one of the more active conferences to take part in last year's historic league realignment — adding Arizona, Colorado, Utah, and Arizona State after losing Texas and Oklahoma to the SEC — current estimates contend the league is still behind the SEC and Big Ten in revenue.

Members of the Big Ten are expected to earn $75 million per year each in its new agreement, with the SEC not far behind, while Big 12 member schools will make almost $32 million each per year.

But with a potential cash injection from a major private equity fund, that number could bring the Big 12 "much closer" to the Big Ten, the report noted.



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James Parks


James Parks is the founder and publisher of College Football HQ. He previously covered football for 247Sports and CBS Interactive. College Football HQ joined the Sports Illustrated Fannation Network in 2022.