With the sale of the Chelsea Football Club, another English Premier League team is now backed by foreign investors. The £4.25-billion takeover of the club, led by an American-based consortium, was just completed after the government approved the acquisition. LA Dodgers co-owner Todd Boehly and private equity firm Clearlake Capital bought the famous London football club, joining three other American investors who have stakes in the so-called Big Six clubs, the strongest teams in the English Premier League.
The newly completed deal is another proof of the growing interest of American and other foreign investors in the English teams, who have been dominating European football in recent years. As the financial injections by foreign investors help the clubs buy strong players and reach more success, the rising dominance of English teams on the pitch further attracts new deals and investments.
Chelsea Sale to US Investors has been Completed
Todd Boehly, who already owns stakes in the Los Angeles Lakers basketball team and the LA Dodgers baseball team, just took over Chelsea F.C. Backed by California-based investment firm Clearlake Capital, Swiss investor Hansjörg Wyss and Guggenheim Partners chief executive Mark Walter, the £4.25 billion deal shows the growing US investors’ interest in the English top flight.
The deal, which was completed end of May after months of negotiations, makes Chelsea the fourth club in the league to be backed by US investors. Manchester United has been under American ownership by the Glazer family since 2005, followed by US-based Fenway Sports Group’s acquisition of Liverpool Football Club in 2010 before London-based club Arsenal was acquired by American businessman Stan Kroenke back in 2011. All these investors also have stakes in leading American sports teams from different leagues such as the MLB, NFL, and NHL.
Foreign Investors are Eyeing the Premier League
Not only US investors have shown interest in the English top flight as investors from different countries have long invested in the Premier League. According to a report by UEFA, 40% of the English Premier League clubs were owned by foreign investors in 2021, while foreign investors held minority stakes in another 35% of the teams. Teams such as Aston Villa, Manchester City, and Fulham, among others, are also under foreign ownership, with investors from the Middle East holding stakes in the clubs.
Foreign investors show growing interest in the English teams as they hope for attractive returns on their investment in one of the strongest European national leagues. Increased dominance in international tournaments and global exposure of the clubs, as well as attractive international broadcast rights and rising revenue streams, put the British national league in the limelight of investors’ interest. The new $2.7 billion six-year US broadcast rights deal between Comcast’s NBC Sports and the Premier League makes the English clubs especially attractive to American investors.
Premier League Teams at the Top of European Football
The growing investment and financial injections in English Premier League clubs help the teams attract some of the best athletes, which in turn helps the teams come out at the top both in national and international competitions. A great example is the Champions League. English teams have continuously made it to the top of the prestigious European event in recent years, making it to the finals in four of the last five seasons. This year, Liverpool came in second as Real Madrid took the title. Twice in the last five years, the finale of the European competition saw two English teams take it out on international grounds.
This immense success continues to draw attention from around the world as more investors, companies and fans look over to England to see world-class football and possibly profit from its exposure and popularity. This even becomes evident in the sports betting field, as bookmakers from around the world offer bets on Premier League games. Now, even some of the best-rated betting sites in Netherlands, which have been reviewed and rated by experts, include the Premier League games among their wide repertoire of international sports tournaments and championships in different types of sports, to bet on the English teams. This shows how the English league’s popularity has long transcended British borders.
With the Premier League clubs rising to the top and continuing to show strong performances both on national and international grounds, it’s no surprise the world wants to watch and take part in the success.