Chelsea FC takeover official as government approves sale | Economic news


The sale of Chelsea FC has been approved by the UK government following the proposed takeover by the Todd Boehly/Clearlake Consortium.

In a statement, the government said it had “reached a position where we could issue a license allowing the sale” of the club.

“We are confident that the proceeds from the sale will not benefit Roman Abramovich or other sanctioned individuals,” Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries said.

It came after the Premier League board approved the proposed takeover on Tuesday.

The sale will bring down the curtain on Roman Abramovich19 years tenure as owner of Chelsea.

“Following Roman Abramovich’s sanction, the government has worked hard to ensure that Chelsea Football Club can continue to play football,” the government statement read.

“But we have always been clear that the long-term future of the club can only be secured by a new owner.”

“We will now begin the process to ensure that the proceeds from the sale are used for humanitarian causes in Ukraine, supporting war victims,” ​​he added.

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Chelsea fans react to new owners

Mr. Abramovich and his advisers reached a binding £4.25bn deal this month with a group mostly funded by Clearlake Capital, a California-based investment firm, and led by LA Dodgers co-owner Todd Boehly.

The former Chelsea owner was sanctioned by the British government on March 10, days after putting the club up for sale, with Downing Street claiming to have proven links to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The club was then placed under a strict government operating license and all of Mr Abramovich’s other UK assets were frozen.

Under the terms of the sanctions, Chelsea were unable to complete any transfers, either with existing players or external targets – but once the takeover is complete, the team will be able to act as if nothing had happened.

Concerns over £1.5billion loan

There are concerns over the fate of a £1.5billion loan to the club’s parent company from Mr Abramovich.

Mr Abramovich’s government sanction means he cannot access the funding needed to repay the loan owed by Fordstam to Camberley International Investments – a vehicle associated with the oligarch.

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The loan would be repayable upon the sale of Chelsea.

Before being disciplined, Mr. Abramovich said he intended to write off the loan and give the net proceeds of the sale to a new foundation set up for the benefit of the victims of the war in Ukraine.

He owns insisted that this remains the casealthough at one point officials claimed they had not seen enough assurances or binding legal commitments to prove it.

New owners can’t sell shares for a decade

Mr Abramovich has reached a binding deal which involves the new owners paying £2.5billion to acquire his shares and pledging £1.75billion in future investment in the stadium, academy and team women of the club.

Sky News recently revealed that the recovery conditions would prevent Mr. Boehly and his fellow investors from paying dividends or taking management fees for a decade.

The new owners will also be banned from selling club shares for 10 years, as well as agreeing to strict limits on the level of debt they can take on.

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