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Must Read: The Banker Who Put His Faith in Armstrong

The Banker Who Put His Faith in Armstrong — The New York Times

A wealthy investment banker who masterminded the Yahoo and Bell Sports Initial Public Offerings, among many other deals, will be watching Thursday’s Armstrong interview with Oprah Winfrey closely, writes The New York Times editor-in-chief Andrew Ross Sorkin.

“Mr. Weisel is a legend in finance and Silicon Valley. He was the banker behind Yahoo’s public offering and some of the biggest deals during the dot-com bubble. He famously sold the firm he ran, Montgomery Securities, for $1.2 billion in 1997. And he sold his next firm, Thomas Weisel Partners, for $300 million to Stifel Financial in 2010,” writes Sorkin. “But it is Mr. Weisel’s extracurricular activity that connects him to the news of the moment: he was Mr. Armstrong’s biggest financial backer and the single individual most responsible for the money machine that propelled Mr. Armstrong’s career.”

Sorkin goes on to explore the intertwined histories of Armstrong and Weisel before closing with a question surrounding Weisel’s knowledge of doping at the U.S. Postal Service team: “Given how widespread the doping now appears to have been on the Postal Service team based on testimony of 11 teammates, and charges against the team’s director and several of its doctors, you wonder how much due diligence its founding banker did on the most prominent deal of his career.”

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