Crystal Palace co-owner John Textor and Authentic Brands founder Jamie Salter are in talks to amass French soccer crew Olympique Lyonnais in a deal valuing the membership at €800mn, underlining the urge for food for sports activities belongings whilst the worldwide financial system slows.
Paris-listed OL Groupe, the mum or dad firm of Lyon, stated it had entered unique sale talks with Eagle Football Holdings, a sports activities funding automobile managed by Textor and Salter.
The deal will see the crew’s longtime proprietor and influential chief in French soccer Jean-Michel Aulas promote most of his stake, whereas cinema group Pathé and personal fairness group IDG Capital can even exit. If the talks result in a sale, Eagle Football Holdings would personal roughly 80 per cent of OL Groupe, which runs males’s and ladies’s groups and basketball operations.
The transaction value of €3 a share would worth Lyon’s fairness at €529.5mn, rising to an enterprise worth of €800mn when together with debt. This would improve to €884mn after a deliberate capital improve for the group’s funding wants, together with constructing a close-by enviornment for live shows and occasions.
International traders have been pouring capital into European leagues and soccer golf equipment, a development that has accelerated for the reason that coronavirus pandemic broken their funds. French groups had been notably laborious hit as a result of the home tv deal fell aside on the similar time, leaving many golf equipment deep in debt.
To flip issues spherical, the league agreed a cope with personal fairness group CVC Capital Partners in April that may see it pay €1.5bn to Ligue de Football Professionnel in alternate for a 13 per cent stake in a brand new business entity that may market the French soccer league’s broadcast rights. CVC has an analogous cope with the Spanish league.
Lyon completed eighth within the French prime tier final season, 25 factors behind Qatar-owned champions Paris Saint-Germain. But it was as soon as one of many nation’s most dominant groups, successful the title seven occasions, and advantages from proudly owning its stadium and coaching centre, a rarity in France.
Its ladies’s crew can also be some of the profitable within the sport, having gained the Champions League six occasions previously seven years, whereas its youth academy has produced many prime gamers within the males’s sport, reminiscent of Karim Benzema and Anthony Martial. OL Groupe additionally owns Washington-based ladies’s crew OL Reign, the place US star participant Megan Rapinoe performs.
OL Groupe made a web lack of €107mn on revenues of €177mn within the 2020-21 season. The group estimated that it missed out on €150mn of revenues because of the pandemic.
Textor owns 40 per cent of Crystal Palace, the English Premier League soccer membership, and controls Belgium aspect RWD Molenbeek and Brazil’s Botafogo.
Authentic Brands, which final 12 months agreed to amass sports activities model Reebok for as much as €2.1bn from Adidas, is a star and clothes licensing group. CVC is a shareholder in Authentic Brands.
“The project that I discovered in Lyon with Jean-Michel Aulas and all his teams will be at the epicentre of our new organisation and our investments in the service of world football,” stated Textor. “Olympique Lyonnais will be the cornerstone of our project.”
US service provider financial institution Raine Group, which suggested sanctions-hit Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich on the £2.5bn sale of Chelsea Football Club, is performing for Pathé and IDG Capital.
The sale of Chelsea was adopted by US funding group RedBird Capital’s €1.2bn acquisition of Italian soccer champions AC Milan, some of the profitable golf equipment within the European sport. RedBird additionally owns French membership Toulouse FC, which is able to play within the prime flight this coming season following promotion.
Other abroad traders in French golf equipment embody Frank McCourt, proprietor of Olympique de Marseille, and UK chemical compounds billionaire Sir Jim Ratcliffe, whose Ineos Sport group took management of OGC Nice in 2019.