Published: Thu, August 09, 2018
Sports | By Juana Wells

Arsenal valued at £1.8bn as Kroenke offers to buy remaining shares

Arsenal valued at £1.8bn as Kroenke offers to buy remaining shares

Stan Kroenke's move to take complete control of Arsenal "marks a awful day" for the Gunners, according to the Arsenal Supporters' Trust (AST). The Associated Press and Daily Telegraph are reporting that the deal has been secured and it will take the value of the club up to $2.3 billion.

But the Arsenal Supporters' Trust set out its opposition to the proposed move.

United States sports mogul Stanley Kroenke, the controlling shareholder in Arsenal Football Club, has agreed to buy Russian billionaire Alisher Usmanov's 30.5% stake in the club.

"18,695 Arsenal shares (representing approximately 30.05 per cent) for an agreed price of £29,419.64 per share in cash valuing Red and White Securities' stake at just over £550m".

The deal cements the position of the USA sports boss among an elite band of super-rich soccer club owners in England.

The ownership battle between Kroenke and Usmanov is a long and complicated one.

Uzbek-born Usmanov previous year attempted to buy control of the Gunners by offering £1 billion (US$1.3 billion) for Kroenke's shares, but had his offer rejected.

Despite his shareholding, Usmanov is not part of the board or the decision-making at Arsenal.

Despite owning 30 percent of the club's shares, he has practically no say in the running of the club.

"We at KSE are moving forward with this offer leading to 100% ownership of the club", Kroenke said in a statement through his company.

A statement from Kroenke on Tuesday morning announced that he had made a bid to seize full control of Arsenal Football Club, and added that he has "an irrevocable undertaking" from fellow shareholder Usmanov to sell his stake in the club.

"The most awful part of this announcement is the news that Kroenke plans to forcibly purchase the shares held by Arsenal fans", the Trust said.

The move takes shares away from fans and Arsenal Supporters Trust published a telling statement on the matter.

AST added that by becoming the 100% owner, Kroenke would be able to take "detrimental actions" such as paying "management fees and dividends without any check or balance". "It is in effect legalised theft to remove shareholder scrutiny on how Arsenal is managed".

Arsenal owner Stan Kroenke looks on from the stands during their match against Burnley at the Emirates Stadium in London, Britain, May 6, 2018. He is not held in the highest esteem by fans of the Colorado Rapids, the Colorado Avalanche, the Denver Nuggets and the Los Angeles Rams. He began building his stake in Arsenal in 2007 after buying a 9.9% holding from ITV.

Should the deal pull through, Arsenal will be owned and controlled by one man for the first time in the history of the club. Unai Emery, the former manager of Paris Saint-Germain, was appointed in his place.

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