Jim Ratcliffe To Purchase A Stake In Manchester United. Complete Details..

Jim Ratcliffe

Over a year ago, Manchester United was available to be purchased for obvious reasons. The team has announced that English billionaire Jim Ratcliffe had agreed to purchase a minority stake in the celebrated Premier League club.

Ratcliffe, who owns petrochemicals giants INEOS and is one of Britain’s richest person, has gotten a stake of “up to 25%” in the 20-time league champions and will invest $300 million in its Old Trafford stadium.

United stated that Ratcliffe would take over the club’s soccer operations as part of the deal.

Ratcliffe will give $200 endless supply of the arrangement and a further $100 million toward the end of 2024, United said. The deal will be worth around $1.6 billion, including the $300 million of financing.

The deal is subject to approval by the Premier League.

Ratcliffe, who was born in Failsworth, Greater Manchester, had originally bid to buy the entire majority share of around 69% held by the Glazers, the club’s American owners.

Ratcliffe is a local boy and a lifelong supporter of the club. And so he is very pleased to have been associated with this deal with the Manchester United Board.

“Whilst the commercial success of the club has ensured there have always been available funds to win trophies at the highest level, this potential has not been fully unlocked in recent times. We will bring the global knowledge, expertise and talent from the wider INEOS Sport group to help drive further improvement at the club, while also providing funds intended to enable future investment into Old Trafford”- Ratcliffe said.

The transaction will be funded by Trawlers Limited — an organization completely owned by Ratcliffe — with practically no obligation, United said. Fans of the club have been incredulous of the utilized idea of the Glazers’ buyout that stacked obligation onto the club, as well as an apparent absence of investment and the profits taken out by the owners.

Avram Glazer and Joel Glazer, United executive co-chairmen and directors, said in the statement: “Sir Jim and INEOS bring a wealth of commercial experience as well as significant financial commitment into the club. And, through INEOS Sport, Manchester United will have access to seasoned high-performance professionals, experienced in creating and leading elite teams from both inside and outside the game.

“Manchester United has talented people right across the club and our desire is to always improve at every level to help bring our great fans more success in the future.”

The Glazers announced last November plans to seek new investment and instructed US merchant bank Raine to oversee the process, which included the potential of a full sale.

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Ratcliffe had been in competition with Qatari banker Sheikh Jassim bin Hamad Al Thani to buy out the Glazers, who also own the NFL’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers. But after months of protracted negotiations Sheikh Jassim withdrew his bid in October to leave Ratcliffe in position to take a minority share in the club.

Sheikh Jassim always maintained he was interested in a complete takeover.

United said Ratcliffe had paid $33 per share, and he is buying into a club that has endured a decade of decline on the field since the retirement of former manager Alex Ferguson in 2013. It has not won the title since.

Ongoing uncertainty over the ownership led to fan protests outside the club’s Old Trafford stadium, while chants of “Glazers out” have been regularly heard during games.

While Ratcliffe was long seen by fans as a popular potential owner, his minority investment means the Glazers remain in place, despite years of fan campaigns to drive them out.

The late tycoon Malcolm Glazer bought United in 2005 for 790 million pounds (then about $1.4 billion) amid a backlash from supporters.

“The joint ambition is to create a world-class football operation building on the club’s many existing strengths, including the successful off-pitch performance that it continues to enjoy,” United said.

Initially, Ratcliffe’s INEOS had said it was aiming for “a modern, progressive, fan-centered approach to ownership.”

It also said it was focused on United winning the Champions League for the first time since 2008 and making it the “number one club in the world once again.”

Ratcliffe is said to be worth $15.1 billion and tried to buy Premier League club Chelsea last year.

He already owns French club Nice, cycling franchise Team INEOS, is one-third shareholder of the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One team and competes in the America’s Cup with sailing team INEOS Britannia.

credit: Sky Sports

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