US investment fund RedBird to buy Serie A champions AC Milan
Rome (AFP) – AC Milan said Wednesday that its current owners, investment fund Elliott Management, have agreed to sell the newly-crowned Italian A champions to rival fund RedBird for 1.2 billion euros ($1.3 billion).
“The transition to new ownership will take place over the summer, with an expected closing no later than September 2022,” the club said in a statement, adding that, under the terms of the deal, Elliott will “retain a minority financial interest in the club and seats on the board of directors.”
Elliott Management acquired the Italian club in 2018 when Chinese businessman Li Yonghong was unable to repay a loan he had taken out when he bought the club from Silvio Berlusconi’s Fininvest in 2017.
In April, Italian media reported interest from Bahrain-based investment fund Investcorp, but the talks ended without a deal at the end of May.
Italian media reported that the deal between Elliott and Investcorp collapsed as seven-time European champions Milan’s owners pushed for a higher purchase price off the back of the Scudetto.
The Gazzetta Dello Sport said Investcorp would not budge from a price of around one billion euros they thought had been agreed and already see as an overvaluation.
And RedBird not only offered a higher fee, they also allowed Elliott to remain minority shareholders and keep both sporting directors Paolo Maldini and Frederic Massara in place.
Elliott issued a “Letter of Gratitude” to the Milan fans round the world.
“We make this transition feeling a deep sense of humility and pride -– and most of all, gratitude for the experiences we have shared with the club, with the City of Milan, and with all of you.
“For your unrelenting passion, belief, and energy, we thank every member of the AC Milan family.”
It rounds off quite a season for Milan, who ended an 11-year hiatus in being crowned Serie A champions last month, finishing two points clear of their city rivals Inter.