Forge FC and ‘caretaker’ Bob Young announce new ownership structure
Forge FC

Young welcomes iconic Hamilton business Stelco to an expanded ownership group along with sports executives Scott Mitchell and Jim Lawson

Hamilton, ON (January 2, 2022) – The Hamilton Tiger-Cats and Forge FC announced today a new ownership structure with the creation of Hamilton Sports Group (HSG). The new entity will own and operate both the Hamilton Tiger-Cats and Forge FC as well as a master license agreement with Tim Hortons Field, a modern 23,000 seat multipurpose stadium in central Hamilton.

The existing ownership group will retain majority ownership and continue to manage the teams. “Caretaker” Bob Young will remain as the Chair and largest single shareholder of Hamilton Sports Group.

Young welcomes a group of passionate and experienced community leaders to the expanded ownership group which includes iconic Hamilton-based Stelco along with senior sports executives Scott Mitchell (current CEO for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats and Forge FC) and Jim Lawson (CEO of Woodbine Entertainment).

A leader in the Hamilton region for 110+ years, Stelco has a long and proud history in supporting and promoting the local business and sports community. Stelco’s Chairman and CEO Alan Kestenbaum will represent the company’s ownership position. A long-time football lover, Kestenbaum is also currently a minority owner of the NFL’s Atlanta Falcons.

Scott Mitchell becomes Managing Partner and CEO of Hamilton Sports Group and lead league governor for both the Hamilton Tiger-Cats and Forge FC. Mitchell has been with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats since 2008 when he was appointed President and has served as the CEO of Bob Young Group of Canadian Companies since 2015. Mitchell, along with Bob Young, is also a co-founder of the Canadian Premier League (CPL) and its commercial partner, Canada Soccer Business (CSB).

Long time sports executive and Hamilton native Jim Lawson brings extensive experience to the new ownership group. Lawson has been the CEO of Woodbine Entertainment since 2015 and is a former Chair of the CFL board of governors twice serving as interim commissioner.

Hamilton Sports Group teams have both experienced recent successes. The Tiger-Cats hosted and played in the CFL’s 108th Grey Cup last month – the team’s second consecutive appearance. Forge FC are one of the inaugural teams in the CPL, winning back-to-back titles in 2019 and 2020 and will compete in the 2022 CONCACAF Champions League. Tim Hortons Field will host an upcoming FIFA World Cup qualification match between Canada and the United States. Other notable events scheduled at Tim Hortons Field include the Buffalo Sabres hosting the Toronto Maple Leafs in the NHL’s 2022 Heritage Classic in March, and the 110th Grey Cup which will be hosted by the Tiger-Cats in 2023.