Ryan Smith buys Utah Jazz for $1.6 billion

Author: Sonali Pathak


The Utah Jazz was sold to CEO and co-founder of Qualtrics, Ryan Smith for $1.6 billion. With this, it is going to be a new beginning for Utah Jazz as they head into the next season under the ownership of Ryan Smith. 

About Qualtrics, Ryan Smith owned Company.

Smith along with other partners found Qualtrics in 2002. Qualtrics, which is an American experience management company is owned by Ryan Smith and headquartered in Provo, Utah. The company has sponsored Jazz who is known for having played in Salt Lake City for a long period of time. This deal between Ryan Smith & Utah Jazz will make Smith the natural owner of the team.

Previously, the Larry H. Miller group of companies owned the franchise of the team. The namesake founder of the Miller group of companies had bought Jazz in 1986 for $24 million. This is surprising to note here that the value of the team had skyrocketed in less than 35 years like never before. The value of Jazz has increased to over a billion dollars since the Miller group of companies bought it for $24 million. Recently, Forbes announced the team to be the 21st most valuable NBA franchise. Forbes had estimated the value of Jazz as $1.55 billion.

How Smith is going to Lead Jazz?

After the whole deal, the interesting thing to watch out for is -- how Smith is going to lead the team. There is a lot of work to be done, to bring Jazz to the potential it actually holds. The Jazz is a great team, but it has not produced any star players after Stockton and Malone during the 90s. It is going to be interesting to look at whether Smith would do his bit to take the team to the next level or is he satisfied with how the team is doing and making the playoffs. 

This has been a relief for a lot of owners across the NBA, with Smith buying a team at the market value in a situation like this. It might have brought some positivity to Glenn Taylor & Peter Holt who are looking forward to selling Minnesota Timberwolves & a minority stake of the San Antonio Spurs respectively. With pandemic at the forefront, still devastating many lives, it was unclear whether this was going to happen. It might have given them a lot of confidence about getting the deal done sooner. There's a lot more to come in the near future!


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