Saturday, August 24, 2013

FL roundup: Browns owner’s company reportedly $4 billion in debt

Cleveland Browns owner Jimmy Haslam’s Pilot Flying J company is $4 billion in debt and has a “downgraded” credit rating, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Pilot Flying J was recently investigated by the FBI for possible fraud. Haslam has denied any knowledge of the company’s alleged questionable business dealings.

A dozen trucking companies sued Pilot Flying J and five former employees pleaded guilty to charges stemming from the FBI investigation.
The Haslam family also sold their shares in the Class AA Tennessee Smokies minor league baseball team.
At the time of the FBI investigation, Haslam said at a news conference that Browns fans need not worry.
But since then he has been offering settlements to trucking companies.

Of greater concern, however, is Haslam’s future as the Browns owner in the wake of the Wall Street Journal report, which stated that Pilot Flying J’s debt nearly doubled to $4 billion over the last two years while the owners gave themselves two payments totaling $1.7 billion from it, according to Moody’s Investors Service.


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