Billionaire investor and hockey enthusiast Nelson Peltz is weighing a plan to buy the $250 million in debt of the troubled New Jersey Devils, a source close to the situation told The Post.
The plan being discussed by Peltz, whose Triarc Companies owns Wendy’s, includes lining up an equity investor to buy the money-losing NHL team should the current team owners fail in their talks with lenders to restructure the debt, according to one person who has spoken with Peltz about the plan in recent weeks.
Peltz, who was said to be interested in buying the New York Islanders last December, is seeking a partner to provide perhaps $50 million in equity in a purchase of the team in a prepackaged bankruptcy.
The Devils missed an Oct. 17 deadline to make a roughly $80 million principal payment. Lenders have not put the team in default.
Rather, the group has extended the deadline and is negotiating with controlling owner Jeffrey Vanderbeek to reach a restructuring.
Vanderbeek is working with Goldman Sachs on an ambitious plan to securitize the team’s TV rights deal. If successful, the securitization will generate roughly $80 million — enough, it is believed, to pay lenders and get the debt restructured.
Goldman has told the lending group the securitization is on track and should be done in mid- to late-January.
If Vanderbeek succeeds, it could put the Peltz plan on ice.
However, while the lending group is working with the Devils to restructure its loans, one lender told The Post he would jump at an offer of $200 million.