Businessman Aquilini buys 50 percent
VANCOUVER, British Columbia -- Vancouver businessman Francesco Aquilini bought 50 percent of the Canucks from American John McCaw.
The purchase price was not immediately disclosed. The surprise sale came during the NHL lockout, which has wiped out the season so far.
"We got a fair deal. We're very happy," Aquilini said Wednesday. "Local ownership adds value; it puts deeper roots in the community. I think it's a good thing. People have been wanting that for a long time."
McCaw has said for years that he would like to sell all or part of the team to local owners.
After many years of losses since the U.S. billionaire bought the club in 1995, the Canucks turned healthy profits the past two seasons.
The Aquilini Group has developed as many as 4,000 residential units in British Columbia and hotel projects in Vancouver, Calgary and Montreal.
Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press