Owners set to unload club shares of Man U

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Owners set to unload club shares of Man U

Manchester United’s American owners are set to raise about $150 million by selling more of their club shares on the New York Stock Exchange.

The English Premier League club announced Wednesday that the Glazer family is selling eight million shares with reduced voting rights, which equates to around 5 percent of the business. The Glazers, who maintain control of the club, previously sold 10 percent of their holding via a stock listing in 2012.

The announcement comes two months after Malcolm Glazer, who led the family takeover of United in 2005, died. His six grown children control the club.

The latest share sale was announced on a day when United shares closed at $19.31, with the Glazers cashing in at a time of renewed confidence at the club.

Former Netherlands and Barcelona coach Louis van Gaal has taken charge following a dismal first season of the post-Alex Ferguson era under David Moyes that saw the team finish seventh and fail to qualify for the Champions League.

United also signed a 10-year kit sponsorship deal earlier this month with Adidas, announcing that it would be worth an overall $1.3 billion from 2015.

But United has disclosed to potential investors in the new share prospectus that failure to play in the Champions League for two or more consecutive seasons would see the annual Adidas payments drop after the first year by 30 percent to $89 million. Conversely, the fee could rise by up to $7 million each year if the team wins the Premier League, Champions League or FA Cup.

Ferguson left after 26 years as manager, winning 13 Premier League titles and the Champions League twice during an unprecedented period of domination. A loss of Champions League revenue from UEFA is already set to cost the club about $60 million next season.

“Our success and many achievements over the last 20 years does not necessarily mean that we will continue to be successful in the future,’’ United said in the share prospectus. United said success on the pitch is key to “the value and strength of our brand and reputation,’’ with a global array of sponsorship deals helping to generate estimated revenue of $727 million for the year to June 30.

AP



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