Washington Spirit sponsors tussle latest in co-owners rift

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More information into the Washington Spirit’s ownership struggles is coming to light.

Sports Business’ Bob Williams detailed in a Twitter thread the club’s recent struggles over sponsorship rights, highlighting another battle between co-owners Steve Baldwin and Y. Michele Kang.

According to sources, Kang (through her company, Cognosante) offered to pay for the team’s jersey sponsorship rights. In total, the deal would have totaled $1 million for the remainder of the 2021 season. However, according to Williams, Baldwin declined and instead accepted a $200,000 deal with IntelliBridge, which is backed by Enlightenment Capital.

Baldwin is believed to be attempting to sell his company QBase to Enlightenment Capital. Newly-named Washington Spirit president Ben Olsen is also an investor in the company.

Williams says that, as of August, Intellibridge had not paid the entirety of the deal to the club.

Additionally, other investors in the club have yet to pay their equity stakes in the club, according to sources. This includes Washington Capitals’ captain Alexander Ovechkin, who holds a $250,000 stake in the Spirit.

According to Williams, CEO Larry Best also does not operate as a full-time employee and instead works as a consultant for the club. And despite Baldwin publicly stepping down as CEO, he is reportedly still in charge of running the business side of the club on a day to day basis.

Last week, Spirit players went public with their demand that Baldwin sell his shares to Kang. Baldwin reportedly offered to, but rescinded his offer before Kang could agree.