New Hamilton Tiger-Cats, Forge FC ownership structure will be called Hamilton Sports Group

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Published January 2, 2022 at 4:30 pm

The Hamilton Tiger-Cats and Forge FC are part of a new ownership structure with the creation of Hamilton Sports Group (HSG).

The Hamilton Tiger-Cats and Forge FC are part of a new ownership structure Sunday (Jan. 2) with the creation of Hamilton Sports Group (HSG).

The new entity will own and operate both the Hamilton Tiger-Cats and Forge FC. HSG will also hold a master license agreement with Tim Hortons Field — the home stadium used by both the Ticats and Forge FC.

The existing ownership group will retain majority ownership and continue to manage the teams. Bob Young will remain as the Chair and largest single shareholder of Hamilton Sports Group.

“My goal as Caretaker has been to ensure our teams prosper for at least another 153 years. We will do this through a commitment to strong values,” said Bob Young, Chair, Hamilton Sports Group. “Ours include a commitment to serve our community and demonstrating leadership through the pursuit of excellence.”

“Our new Hamilton Sports Group partners perfectly represent the values we aspire to, and they will ensure our continued success,” he added.

According to an official media release, Young will welcome a group of community leaders to the expanded ownership group, which includes Hamilton-based steel company, Stelco along with senior sports executives Scott Mitchell (current CEO for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats and Forge FC) and Jim Lawson (CEO of Woodbine Entertainment).

Stelco’s Chairman and CEO Alan Kestenbaum will represent the company’s ownership position. He is also currently a minority owner of the NFL’s Atlanta Falcons.

Scott Mitchell becomes Managing Partner and CEO of Hamilton Sports Group and the lead league governor for both the Hamilton Tiger-Cats and Forge FC. He has been with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats since 2008 when he was appointed President and has served as the CEO of Bob Young Group of Canadian Companies since 2015.

“This is an incredibly exciting time to be a Hamilton sports fan,” said Scott Mitchell, Managing Partner and CEO, Hamilton Sports Group. “This new structure ensures our leadership and vision remains in place while adhering to Bob Young’s “Caretaker” ethos as stewards of the community and its professional sports teams.”

“We are incredibly excited about bringing on Stelco under the leadership of Alan Kestenbaum and his executive team and know they share our enthusiasm for our community and for bringing great events and experiences to Tim Hortons Field,” he added.

Mitchell, along with Bob Young, is also a co-founder of the Canadian Premier League (CPL) and its commercial partner, Canada Soccer Business (CSB).

Long-time sports executive and Hamilton native Jim Lawson has been the CEO of Woodbine Entertainment since 2015 and is a former Chair of the CFL board of governors twice serving as interim commissioner.

The Tiger-Cats hosted and played in the CFL’s 108th Grey Cup last month – the team’s second consecutive appearance.

Forge FC are one of the inaugural teams in the CPL, winning back-to-back titles in 2019 and 2020 and will compete in the 2022 CONCACAF Champions League.

Tim Hortons Field will host an upcoming FIFA World Cup qualification match between Canada and the United States. Other notable events scheduled at Tim Hortons Field include the Buffalo Sabres hosting the Toronto Maple Leafs in the NHL’s 2022 Heritage Classic in March, and the 110th Grey Cup which will be hosted by the Tiger-Cats in 2023.

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