February 13, (THEWILL) – Billionaire industrialist, Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s recent purchase of a 25% stake in Manchester United has been officially approved by the English Premier League.
The $300 million investment, which values the club at around $5 billion, required Ratcliffe to pass the league’s Owners’ and Directors’ Test that reviews potential owners.
The EPL has now announced that Ratcliffe has successfully completed the test, which examines candidates for criminal convictions, bans by sporting bodies, and other integrity issues.
An independent oversight panel gave the final sign-off to ratify Ratcliffe’s purchase. This is the first high-profile case reviewed under stricter regulations adopted by clubs last year.
The deal still requires approval by the Football Association, but this is viewed as a formality expected to be announced next week. Ratcliffe has offered $33 per share to purchase up to 25% of the club’s Class A shares. As of last week’s deadline, holders of 36.7% of those shares had already agreed to sell at that price.
Ratcliffe’s investment comes at a pivotal time for United, currently fifth in the EPL table. The club hopes the billionaire’s business acumen and resources can help rebuild the squad and challenge for titles again after a decade-long drought. Ratcliffe has vowed to return United to its former glories.
The 70-year-old founded chemical company INEOS and has an estimated net worth of over £12 billion. He already owns French club OGC Nice and the INEOS Grenadiers cycling team. Ratcliffe has been seeking an EPL investment for years, failing in a bid to purchase Chelsea in 2023 before setting his sights on his boyhood club the Red Devils.
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Jude Obafemi is a versatile senior Correspondent at THEWILL Newspapers, excelling in sourcing, researching, and delivering sports news stories for both print and digital publications.