New name for Nets arena? How about “U.S. Taxpayer Bailout for U.K. Bank Center”?

New name for Nets arena? How about “U.S. Taxpayer Bailout for U.K. Bank Center”?

Barclays got a share of U.S. bailout money to AIG last fall at the same time the Brit bank re-affirmed its deal to pay Nets $400 million for its name on Brooklyn arena.

Working both sides of the Atlantic, British behemoth Barclays got sneakily paid off by U.S.-taxpayer-financed bailout funds late last year given to whiny insuror AIG, and now Barclays is negotiating, of course, to get U.K. government help in getting rid of toxic assets.

It turns out that while the U.K. conglomerate was getting a share of the bailout money, it recommitted last November its deal to pay $400 million to the New Jersey/Brooklyn Nets for naming rights to the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. “Barclays still loyal to Nets’ cause,” the Bergen Record trumpeted on November 13:

Whether Bruce Ratner will continue with construction of the Barclays Center may be in question, but at least the foreign bank was able to get U.S. bailout money more or less under the table.

Over the weekend, the Wall Street Journal confirmed suspicions by revealing that two dozen U.S. and foreign banks got shares of AIG’s bailout money.

Meanwhile AIG, like other U.S. bailout recipients, has balked at committing how — or whether — it will reimburse taxpayers for the estimated $173 billion of bailout money it’s received so far.

It’s probably just an unpleasant coincidence, by the way, that the arena was designed by Frank Gehry, many of whose buildings look as though they’re on the verge of collapse.

More morsels on Barclays and/or the Barclays Center:

• Puffery from the Barclays Center website on how a Barclays arm provides “solutions” for corporate clients and governments: “Barclays Capital is the investment banking division of Barclays Bank PLC, which has an AA long-term credit rating and a balance sheet of over $2.4 trillion. With a distinctive business model, Barclays Capital provides large corporate, government and institutional clients with solutions to their financing and risk management needs. Barclays Capital has offices in 29 countries, employs over 16,200 people and has the global reach and distribution power to meet the needs of issuers and investors worldwide.

Leave a Reply