Silver Hawks will be sold to Chicago businessman - Fox 28: South Bend, Elkhart IN News, Weather, Sports

Silver Hawks will be sold to Chicago businessman

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President of the South Bend Silver Hawks, Joe Kernan, announced Wednesday at 2:00pm that the team will be sold to Andrew Berlin.

"We have had other interest in purchasing the team over the past few months, but only Andrew Berlin wanted to keep the team in South Bend. That has always been our goal - to keep the team here at home." Kernan said.

Berlin is Chairman and CEO of Berlin Packaging in Chicago.  He is also a limited partner with the Chicago White Sox.

"If not for Joe Kernan and his investors who clung to this team for the past six years at a considerable personal expense, I would not be here today. Why? Because the team would not be here today. They did something rare. They kept the team here because they knew losing it would be bad for South Bend." Berlin said.

Kernan emphatically denied the Silver Hawks had been sold in a press conference two weeks ago.  He did admit that he was looking for investors and that there had been an offer several months ago.  That offer was rejected, because the buyer wished to move the team.

Kernan says that Berlin intends to keep the team in South Bend.  The Silver Hawks will also remain a Diamondbacks affiliated team. 

The current agreement for the team to use Coveleski Stadium ends on December 31st of this year.  FOX28 News was told that Berlin intends to sign a twenty-year commitment with the city to stay at the stadium.  That deal first has to be approved by the MidWest League, Minor League Baseball, and Major League Baseball before it is final. Berlin said he expects that to be approved by mid-December. Berlin said that he has retained Ripkin Design to continue improvements on the stadium.

Berlin has already met with city officials, including the mayor-elect, on the plans and with Mayor Luecke. "Andrew Berlin is virtually guaranteeing that the hundreds of jobs created by the team, and millions of dollars in new revenue poured into the local economy will continue for years to come." Luecke said.

The value of the sale has not been disclosed at this time.

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