CONVERGE ICT Solutions has effectively acquired Alaska's PBA franchise after the league's Board of Governors unanimously approved of the buyout.
PBA Commissioner Willie Marcial made the announcement at a press conference on Wednesday at the SM Mall of Asia Arena. Also in attendance were Alaska governor Richard Bachmann and former PBA Commissioner Angelico T. Salud, whom Marcial introduced as Converge's represenative to the Board of Governors.
"I wish to thank the PBA Board of Governors led by Chairman Ricky Vargas, PBA Commissioner Willie Marcial and Alaska team owner Mr. Wilfred Uytengsu for the invaluable and unqualified support they have lent Converge in realizing its quest to become a member of the PBA," said Dennis Anthony Uy, Converge's CEO and co-founder, in a statement read by Salud.
"We are excited to commence our journey in building a track record and legacy of competitiveness, innovation, character, discipline, devotion and sportsmanship worthy of the support and respect of the PBA.
"We look forward to contributing our share in delighting and hopefully exceeding the expectations of PBA fans for topnotch sports entertainment," the statement added.
Under the deal, the league's new member will assume all obligations to the Alaska players with existing contracts and will hold the rights to the players with expiring contracts.
Bachmann said Uytengsu thanks the PBA and the PBA Board of Governors for allowing Alaska to receive the proceeds of the sale. The sale could have stayed with the PBA.
Uy also thanked Manny V. Pangilinan of the PLDT group for showing a remarkable sporting spirit in welcoming Converge into the league.
Alaska joined Asia's first play for pay league in 1986, winning 14 championships including a grandslam in 1996.