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RAJ Sports Buys Female Soccer Team

Newport Beach firm now owns Portland Thorns PC

Newport Beach-based RAJ Sports, led by siblings Lisa Bhathal Merage and Alex Bhathal, has formally assumed controlling ownership of Portland Thorns FC of the National Women’s Soccer League from Peregrine Sports LLC, the two groups announced today. Terms weren’t disclosed.

Lisa Bhathal Merage will serve as controlling owner and NWSL Governor, while Alex Bhathal will serve as NWSL Alternate Governor. The trade publication Sportico valued the team at $65 million.

“This is a milestone day for our family, and for the amazing Portland community,” Lisa Bhathal Merage said in a statement. “Everything we do centers on positive impact. As fans ourselves, and as seasoned sports and real estate operators, we believe in the future of Portland and the NWSL, and in the tremendous opportunity that surrounds this iconic team.”

This acquisition represents the latest in a growing portfolio of sports team ownership positions held by the Bhathal family, who include Lisa, Alex, and their parents Raj and Marta Bhathal. The family’s additional holdings include the NBA’s Sacramento Kings, Sacramento RiverCats AAA baseball club, Stockton Kings NBA-G League club, and Kings Guard NBA 2K e-sports team. Additionally, Lisa and Alex are co-founders and managing partners of Revitate, a Newport Beach-based investment firm specializing in sports, real estate, and consumer brand investments.

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Peter J. Brennan
Peter J. Brennan
Peter J. Brennan has been a journalist for 40 years. He spent a decade in Latin America covering wars, narcotic traffickers, earthquakes, and business. His resume includes 15 years at Bloomberg News where his headlines and articles sometimes moved the market caps of companies he covered by hundreds of millions of dollars. His articles have been published worldwide, including the New York Times and the Washington Post; he's appeared on CNN, CBC, BBC, and Bloomberg TV. He was awarded a Kiplinger Fellowship at The Ohio State University.
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