The derby to buy Manchester United Football Club is really heating up now! Yesterday was, initially, the deadline for potential purchasers to submit their second bids. Now comes a major plot twist as Raine Group, the Wall St. I-bank overseeing this process for the Glazers, granted an extension.
The deadline was initially 9 p.m. UK, 5pm NYC time last night. Here comes the plot twist however, Raine granted bidders an extension to “fine tune” their offers, according to a report in Sky News.
Then you have the ESPN report which states that this development could lead to either a third round of building, or Raine designating a “preferred bidder.” As we profiled yesterday, there are two co-front runners here:
-a consortium led by Qatari banker Sheikh Jassim (more on this party here)
-and INEOS Founder/billionaire Sir Jim Ratcliffe. (more on this competing party here)
Both will be given more time to tweak their bid (read: throw even more money into it!) and then submit it by the new deadline.
While last night’s deadline has been extended, a new hard and fast deadline has not been set. The end result is widely expected to break the world record for amount of money paid for a sports club. It is expected to easily surpass the amount paid by American billionaire and L.A Dodgers and Lakers Owner Todd Boehly for Chelsea last spring.
It will be “tremendous C.R.E.A.M. f**k a dollar and a dream,” as the immortal Notorious B.I.G. once said (obviously referencing the timeless Wu-Tang Clan classic “Cash Rules Everything Around Me.”
The Glazers’ final purchase price for the club, back in 2011, totaled almost £800 million (or $1.4 billion). People laughed at the time!
But you can’t laugh now as both competing interests are reportedly ready to go about $6.2 billion for the club. Meanwhile the Glazers are said to be holding out for over $7 billion. No one can say for sure when this process will complete itself, but it is expected to reach its conclusion some time around the end of the season in May. (Like the Chelsea sale did last year).
Paul M. Banks is the owner/manager of The Sports Bank. He’s also the author of “Transatlantic Passage: How the English Premier League Redefined Soccer in America,” and “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry.”
He’s written for numerous publications, including the New York Daily News, Sports Illustrated and the Chicago Tribune. He regularly appears on NTD News and WGN News Now. Follow the website on Twitter and Instagram.