Oprah Winfrey

Multi-tasking Maestro Oprah Bid for LA Clippers from Set

03 Jun 2014

TV Titan part of consortium that put together a Dhs3.4 billion bid

Oprah Winfrey must be the queen of multi-tasking. The talk-show legend appeared on set for the first days of filming her new movie Selma whilst simultaneously masterminding a reputed Dhs3.4 billion bid for the Los Angeles Clippers basketball team, after its owner Donald Sterling became embroiled in a racism scandal.

Oprah, who started shooting the new Martin Luther King, Jr. biopic on the day she signed the paperwork for the bid, had to run around the film lot looking for a fax machine to make sure the offer was put on the table.

She told Entertainment Tonight, "I was in the middle of these scenes while making the bid - literally the first day I was going to shoot. I had to run upstairs in the building, find a fax machine - we're putting in the bid and I'm signing it, and I'm thinking, 'How ironic is that? I'm playing a woman who can't get the right to vote, and now you're putting in a bid (to buy a professional sports team).'"

Winfrey's consortium eventually lost out to former Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer, who paid approx Dhs8 billion for the team but the chat show legend now admits her business advisers warned her against buying the Clippers. "We went over that number (their original bid), and then we went over that number again, and by the time we got to the final number (it was no longer) a good business decision. But for me? I was doing it. You know, my lawyers were like, 'Do you even like basketball?' I said, 'Yes, I love basketball! And this is gonna be so much fun!' I thought it would be entertaining. $2 billion (Dhs7.5 billion)? - Ok, now that's my limit!"

Officials at the National Basketball Association ordered Sterling to sell the team and fined him Dhs9.4 million after he was caught on tape making derogatory remarks about African Americans