Several members of the New Orleans Saints, whose stock portfolios likely took a major hit last year, also have lost money as part of an investment in a potentially failing film studio.
Per Robert Scott of the New Orleans Times-Picayune, more than two dozen people with ties to the Saints invested close to $2 million in Louisiana Film Studios.
And they apparently won’t be getting any of their money back.
The investors included coach Sean Payton, quarterback Drew Brees, and former Saints quarterback Archie Manning.
Apparently, the thinking was that the investment was a safe one, because the company was participating in a “routine tax credit program.” The only problem? The company never received authorization for the credits.
“They weren’t approved — there was no reason to think they would not be,” Manning told the Times-Picayune.
Manning also claims that the FBI is investigating the situation.
There’s arguably a certain karma to the situation, however. The investors were trying to flip their investments into a reduction in their state income taxes. For example, Brees sank $100,000 into the endeavor, in the hopes of getting $133,000 in tax credits.
There’s little or no risk — as long as the company in which the money is invested qualifies for the credits.
And though it’s all legitimate, it’s yet another example of how the rich always (well, apparently not always) find ways to get richer.
The top losers were defensive end Charles Grant ($425,000), former punter Mitch Berger ($250,000), and Payton ($144,000).
But the first guy to bring the opportunity to the attention of the team was former long snapper Kevin Houser. In fact, Houser told Archie Manning’s investment adviser about the situation, prompting Manning to plunk down $80,000. (Manning said that neither Peyton nor Eli were involved, likely because they pay no Louisiana state income taxes.)
And here’s the kicker — there’s a rumor that Houser was recently cut not because of his skills, but in retaliation for his role in causing his head coach and teammates to lose so much money.
If that’s the case, it’ll be interesting to see whether Houser files a non-injury grievance as a result of his termination.
Then again, maybe it’s good that he’s gone. If the Saints hadn’t cut Houser, he might have eventually filed an injury grievance — after guys like Grant and Brees pounded the crap out of him.