A group of investors led by Chicago Cubs co-owner Laura Ricketts has purchased the National Women's Soccer League's Chicago Red Stars in a $60 million deal.
Ricketts, who is also a minority owner of the Chicago Sky, was joined in the endeavor by numerous high-profile members of the business and sports community, including Debra Cafaro, CEO of Ventas and a partner in the ownership of the NHL’s Pittsburgh Penguins. Sideny Dillard, a partner at Chicago’s Loop Capital, also joined the ownership group, as did TAWANI Enterprises CEO Jennifer Pritzker and Impact Engine CEO Jessica Droste Yagan, among others.
“There is unprecedented fan growth in women’s soccer globally, and we want to be a part of building on that momentum and success here in Chicago," Ricketts said in a statement.
“Our respective backgrounds in professional sports, finance, turnaround management, commercial real estate, marketing and advertising, paired with our deep community ties, make for a powerful combination that will serve us well in our ultimate goal: building a championship organization on and off the pitch.”
Ricketts said that one of her priorities as an owner is to meet with players and keep an open dialogue.
“Building a championship culture begins with treating our players with the respect they deserve as women and athletes. We are committed to strengthening this team, this club, this league, and this game – all of which begins with the safety of and support for the athletes on the pitch,” Ricketts said.
The Red Stars joined the NWSL in 2013. Playing their home games at SeatGeek Stadium in suburban Bridgeview, the club has made the playoffs in each of the last seven seasons, including trips to the championship game in 2019 and 2021.
Samantha Kerr, Carli Lloyd and Christen Press are among the famed players who have donned the Red Stars’ shirt over the course of the club’s history.
Currently, U.S. goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher represents the club in the NWSL, and represented her country in the 2023 World Cup.
The Red Stars' next home game is on Sept. 17 against Angel City FC.