May 27, 2024
MyNewsGh

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Manchester United have confirmed that Sir Jim Ratcliffe has acquired a 25% stake in the club worth about £1.25bn.

According a club statement, the British billionaire will take control of the club’s football operations through his Ineos Group.

Per Ratcliffe’s agreement with the club, the 71-year-old will provide an additional $300m (£236m) for future investment into Old Trafford.

In his first statement since the minority stake-acquisition, the Manchester-born chairman of petrochemicals company Ineos said: “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.

“We are here for the long term and recognise that a lot of challenges and hard work lie ahead, which we will approach with rigour, professionalism and passion. We are committed to working with everyone at the club – the board, staff, players and fans – to help drive the club forward.

“Our shared ambition is clear: we all want to see Manchester United back where we belong, at the very top of English, European and world football.”

The announcement comes 13 months after the club’s owners, the Glazer family, stated they were considering selling to “explore strategic alternatives”.

The club say the deal is “subject to customary regulatory approvals” but are “hopeful it will be completed as soon as possible”.

How will the deal work?

Ratcliffe has agreed to buy 25% of the club’s class B shares, largely held by the Glazer family, who own 69% of the club, and contain almost all the voting rights, and up to 25% of its class A shares, which are listed on the New York Stock Market.

It means the Glazer family are still majority shareholders of the club.

However, the agreement gives the Ineos Group and Sir Jim Ratcliffe sporting control at the club. This means Ineos will be responsible for the day to day running of the men’s and women’s football operations and academies.

Ratcliffe’s investment entitles him to two seats on the Manchester United PLC and Manchester United Football Club boards.

Subject to necessary approvals, Ratcliffe will delegate his seats on the PLC board to John Reece, a shareholder of Ineos, and Rob Nevin, chairman of Ineos Sport.

On the UK club board he will delegate his seats to former British Cycling chief Sir Dave Brailsford and former Juventus and Paris St-Germain executive Jean-Claude Blanc.

United’s executive co-chairmen and directors, Avram Glazer and Joel Glazer, said: “Sir Jim and Ineos bring a wealth of commercial experience as well as significant financial commitment into the club.

“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.”

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