American sports tycoon Stan Kroenke has secured a majority stakeholding in Arsenal Football Club, and may soon take over the club completely, according to The Guardian.Kroenke now owns 62.89% of the club, after purchasing the shares of two other board members, must now make a bid for the full club, according to UK rules. His bid values the club at £731 million ($1,194 billion).
If Kroenke is to complete his purchase of the team, he will need to pay a total of £500 million ($817 million) to do so. Standing in the way of a total takeover is fellow foreign Arsenal investor Alisher Usmanov, to which Kroenke we need to pay £200 for his shares.
The deal is the latest in a spate of foreign takeovers of Premier League clubs. In October of last year, John Henry purchased Liverpool FC for £300 from two other North American owners. Manchester United is owned by Malcolm Glazer, another American sports tycoon. (He owns the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Arsenal supporters are concerned Kroenke may be using a tactic similar to that which Malcolm Glazer used to buy Manchester United, where he raised debt himself and then put it back on the team’s balance sheet after his takeover was completed. Kroenke has denied he is using such means to buy the club.
Kroenke’s fortune is built on owning the land occupied by Wal-Mart stores. He also owns the Colorado Rapids MLS team, Colorado Avalanche NHL team, Denver Nuggets NBA team, and the St. Louis Rams.
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