Russian billionaire 'to sell' shares in Arsenal to Kroenke

U.S. billionaire Kroenke seeks to buy all of Arsenal for £1.8bn

Russian billionaire 'to sell' shares in Arsenal to Kroenke

Arsenal's majority shareholder Stan Kroenke has offered Alisher Usmanov $777 million for his 30 percent stake in the club with the American businessman aiming for total control of the north London team.

Majority shareholder Stan Kroenke launches a £600m offer to buy Arsenal outright from minority owner Alisher Usmanov.

Arsenal fans have expressed anger at the news United States businessman Stan Kroenke is set to take control over the club by buying out Russian magnate Alisher Usmanov.

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

Sky Sports reports that KSE has received an "irrevocable undertaking" from Usmanov's company Red and White Securities "to accept the offer as soon as possible", and by the latest at 3pm today.

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The contest between Kroenke and Usmanov have grown bitter over the years and so in a sense, Arsenal can now look forward to a period of stability.

Acquiring Usmanov's shares would move KSE past the 90% threshold at which, under the Companies Act, they would be able to compulsorily purchase the remaining 1,779 shares, which are valued at £52.3m.

Deutsche Bank has agreed to provide Kroenke with a bridging loan of £557m to complete the buy-out.

In March, a single share in Arsenal had a price of £30,000 - Kroenke's offer puts that price at £29,419.64, which knocks a substantial amount off his total outlay if he purchases now.

Rob Wilson, a football finance expert from Sheffield Hallam University, told DW that the Arsenal deal is directly comparable to the Glazer takeover in 2005, when United were delisted from the stock exchange.

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Arsenal have endured a hard period on the pitch in recent seasons, last winning the league in 2004 and failing to qualify for the lucrative Champions League for the past two seasons.

The metal magnate made a £1bn bid to buy the Emirates outfit in May 2017 but this was rejected by Kroenke.

Kroenke, owner of the Los Angeles Rams American football team, has been a part-owner of Arsenal since 2007, gradually increasing his stake in the club since. Following Arsene Wenger's departure last season - which despite his claim that he was stepping down after 22 years was essentially a sacking - Kroenke reiterated his commitment to the club, and appointed former Paris Saint-Germain and Sevilla boss Unai Emery as Wenger's replacement.

Later on Tuesday, Red and White Holdings released their own short statement to confirm the deal. He believes that although it "removes the level of transparency that fans have had" not much will change in regards to how Arsenal are run.

A KSE statement says taking the club private will help to further Arsenal's "strategy and ambitions". "Kroenke's actions will neuter their voice and involvement", the Trust said in a statement.

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