Gillet has retained financial firms in Canada, the United States and Europe. Their task is to come up with a strategy to maximize the value of his corporate assets. It is possible the plan will include selling the Canadiens.
"The Gillett family has retained the services of financial advisers to assess various strategic alternatives to optimize the value of its corporate assets," Canadiens president Pierre Boivin said in a statement Monday.
"In Canada, the family has retained the services of BMO Capital Markets and the process is underway."
BMO plans to examine all possibilities which includes
selling the club, financial restructuring or bringing in new investors.
Gillett owns 80.1 percent of the team and the Bell Centre.
He also owns
the Gillett Evernham NASCAR team, 50 percent of English soccer giant Liverpool,event promoter Gillett Entertainment Group, ski resorts, car dealerships and agricultural companies.
In 2001,Gillett bought the Canadiens and their arena for $275 million with the help of $140 million in loans from two banks and the Quebec pension fund.
The Canadiens were valued
by Forbes in October at $334 million US — third highest in the NHL behind the Toronto Maple Leafs ($448 million) and New York Rangers ($411 million).