PUEBLO, Colo. (May 5, 2008 ) – The Professional Bull Riders, Inc. (PBR) is excited to unveil its newest investors–two of the sporting world’s most renowned athletes. National Football League (NFL) Hall of Famer John Elway and National Hockey League (NHL) Hall of Famer Wayne Gretzky are two of the PBR’s newest shareholders through Spire Capital Partners, L.P., the PBR’s partner and private equity firm.
Randy Bernard, PBR CEO, shared his excitement, “The PBR is extremely proud to have these two incredible athletes associated with our organization. This is another way the PBR can become more visible in the world of mainstream sports.”
Former Denver Bronco, John Elway, is still revered as being one of the best NFL quarterbacks of all time. He holds many records, one of these being 148 games won as a starting quarterback, as well as holding the record of being a 5-time Super Bowl starting quarterback.
“To be associated with a group of people like the Professional Bull Riders, and my good friend Wayne Gretzky, is a win-win situation for me,” said Elway. “I really look forward to being involved with this great group and sharing in our successes together.”
Gretzky, widely considered the greatest player in the history of the National Hockey League, still remains the most statistically dominant player in the history of North American team sports. He captured 61 NHL scoring records during his 20-year career, and continues to hold or share these records. “The Great One” also won four Stanley Cups, as well as many international competitions. Following his final NHL game on April 18, 1999, Gretzky became the first and only player in NHL history to have his jersey number retired by all member clubs.
“Coming on board with the Professional Bull Riders is an exciting and unique opportunity,” said Gretzky. “Their success as an entertainment vehicle has been well documented, and to be a part of such a well-respected and up-an-coming venture is thrilling.”
Spire Capital Partners completed its partnership with PBR in April 2007. Spire Capital Partners, L.P., is now the majority investor of PBR, the leading, global professional bull riding organization.