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HomeNewsMan Utd sale: Finnish businessman reveals offer

Man Utd sale: Finnish businessman reveals offer


Finnish businessman Thomas Zilliacus said he submitted an offer to buy Manchester United in which he would provide half of the funds and the other half would come from the club’s fans.

Zilliacus, owner of Finnish champion HJK Helsinki, said his offer was submitted through XXI Century Capital, an investment firm owned by his holding company.

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“Any sports club should ultimately belong to its fans” Zilliacus said in a statement on Thursday. “The current development, where billionaire sheikhs and oligarchs take over clubs and control them as their personal playgrounds, is not a healthy trend.”

Manchester United’s current owners, the Glazer family, announced in November that they were looking at “strategic alternatives”, including investment or an outright sale. Sources have told ESPN that the Gazers value the club at around £6 billion ($7.4 billion), which would be a record fee paid by a sports team.

Raine Group, the commercial bank handling the process for the Glazer family, has set a Wednesday deadline for second offers. However, an extension was granted to some potential buyers on Wednesday night, sources told ESPN.

Qatari banker Sheikh Jassim and British billionaire Sir Jim Ratcliffe, chairman and chief executive of chemical company INEOS, are the only bidders to previously make their interest public.

Ratcliffe submitted a revised offer on Thursday, an INEOS spokesperson said in a statement. The sources said that Sheikh Jassim is also set to submit a second offer.

However, Zilliacus, a former Nokia executive who also owns Finnish ice hockey team Jokerit, says his novel funding approach would allow fans to participate in the running of the Premier League giants.

“The current market value of the club is just under $3.9 billion,” Zilliacus said. “That means if every one of the club’s fans joined in buying the club, the total amount per fan would be less than $6.

“My bet is based on equality with the fans. My group will finance half of the amount necessary to take over the club, and will ask the fans, through a new company that is being created for this specific purpose, to participate in the other half. If all the fans join, it means less than $3 per fan.

“Each fan who joins will have access to an application that the fan, from anywhere in the world, can use to participate and cast their vote in decisions on football matters relating to the club. No decisions will be made that are not endorsed by a majority of the fan base.”

united man claims to have 1.1 billion fans worldwidebased on a 2019 report from the global market research agency, Kantar.

Merry C. Vega is a highly respected and accomplished news author. She began her career as a journalist, covering local news for a small-town newspaper. She quickly gained a reputation for her thorough reporting and ability to uncover the truth.

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