Usmanov appears ready to plough his cash into another football club after agreeing to sell his 30 percent stake in Arsenal to Stan Kroenke. The Russian billionaire had been trying to take over the Gunners for the last 10 seasons all in vain.
The Russian’s USM Holdings already sponsors Everton’s training ground, Finch Farm, and he is a friend and business partner of the club’s major shareholder Farhad Moshiri.
“We are friends with Farhad Moshiri. If he needs the support, I am happy to help.” Said Usmanov
Usmanov bought his stake in Arsenal in 2007 from David Dein. Although he has been frustrated over his lack of influence, the value of the club more than quadrupled while he was an investor.
“When I bought the stake in Arsenal I believed that football brands would be able to generate profit,” he said. “This is happening now.”
Usmanov’s Arsenal shares are valued at around £550m. Kroenke plans to make a compulsory buyout offer for all remaining Arsenal shares once he has 90 percent of the stock.
It is also likely that Usmanov would want to wield significantly more influence at any new club than he was afforded at Arsenal, where he was routinely thwarted by Kroenke.
According to reports, Usmanov could also be interested in other clubs within Germany and Italy. ‘Should there be a proposal or a possibility to invest in them with good potential returns, I would consider the deal,’ he said.
Usmanov, 64, made his fortune in iron-ore production and telecommunications, and has a personal fortune of around £11 billion. He spent 11 years at Arsenal before selling to American, Kroenke in a controversial move that has angered some Gunners’ fans.
Usmanov is now free to look for other options to place his money and build an empire that he feels can give him the success that he needs.
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Author: Moses Echodu
Moses is a freelance writer for Newslibre and Programs Associate at the Uganda Child Cancer Foundation. He loves writing about sports, politics and news around the globe and Inspiring new young people!!