Explores strategic options around sales

Late on Tuesday evening came the expected confirmation. Manchester United releases a new press release:

“Manchester United plc (NYSE:MANU), one of the world’s most successful and historic sports clubs, today announces that the Company’s Board of Directors is beginning a process to explore strategic options for the club.”

“The process is designed to strengthen the future growth of the club, with the ultimate aim of positioning the club to take advantage of opportunities both on the pitch and commercially.”

“As part of this process, the board will consider all strategic options, including new investment in the club, a sale or other transactions involving the business. This will include an assessment of several initiatives to strengthen the club, including the redevelopment of the stadium and infrastructure, and the expansion of the club’s business operations globally, each in the context of enhancing the long-term success of the club’s men, women and the academy, and provide benefits to fans and other stakeholders.

“Executive Chairman and Directors Avram Glazer and Joel Glazer say: ‘The strength of Manchester United is built on the passion and loyalty of our global community of 1.1 billion fans and followers. As we look to continue to build on the club’s history of success, the board has approved a thorough assessment of strategic options. We will consider all options to ensure that we best serve our fans and that Manchester United maximize the significant growth opportunities available to the club now and in the future. Throughout this process, we will remain fully focused on serving the interests of our fans, shareholders and various stakeholders. »

“Raine Group is acting as the Company’s exclusive financial advisor and Latham & Watkins LLP is the Company’s legal advisor.

“Rothschild & Co. serves as the exclusive financial advisor to Glazer family shareholders.

“No guarantee can be given that the review carried out will result in any transaction involving the business. Manchester United do not intend to make any further announcements regarding the review unless and until the board of directors has approved a specific transaction or other action requiring formal announcement.

Read the press release in English here.

What does it mean?

We can then ask ourselves the question of what this will mean for the club in the short and long term.

The fact that owners are considering different strategic alternatives is likely related to the extent to which the property needs to be resolved.

According to the press release, the owners of United have sought advice from the Raine Group and several other companies to advise the owners on a process that could include a full or partial sale, or a strategic partnership with third parties.

The Raine Group also played a key role in the sale of Chelsea to Todd Boehly in May 2022.

The press release also says opportunities are being explored for further investment in the club, raising hopes that much-needed rebuilding and refurbishment of Old Trafford may be part of the plans, alongside time it is also about business opportunities.

Second club in a short time

It’s only been 15 days since the owners of Liverpool (FSG) announced the club was for sale.

They too have had American owners, and many, including Mark Kleinman who was the first to suggest United could go up for sale on Tuesday, wonder if it’s a coincidence that United and Liverpool are now up for sale at the same time. and that it might have something to do with nothing coming out of the European Super League.

Ralph Hutchinson

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