Business of Sport

Man U tap Asian fan base

2011-08-17 10:59
Manchester United
London - Manchester United’s mooted partial stock market flotation in the Far East is targeted towards the club’s huge Asian fan base, according to a financial expert.

Owners of the Barclays Premier League champions, the Glazer family, are planning to reduce their stake in the club, according to widespread reports on Tuesday.

It is believed that an initial public offering (IPO) could raise $1 billion for a 25% to 30% stake in the club with the flotation viewed as a method to reduce United’s sizeable debt, which has been a continual source of concern for their fans.

Although United have refused to comment on the reports it is believed a listing on either the Singapore or larger Hong Kong Stock Exchange could be approved by the end of the year.

The Florida-based Glazer family acquired United for £790 million in 2005 in an agreement that saw the club de-listed from the London Stock Exchange. While the Glazers reportedly plan to remain in control at Old Trafford, a partial flotation would reduce the club’s debt, which exceeds £500 million.

United has an estimated 333 million fans globally and more than 190 million in Asia – a key factor according to Stephen Schechter, chairman of London-based investment bank Schechter Co. “Obviously the leverage has been bothering the Glazers so they want to use whatever cash they get in to get a return for themselves on capital, to reduce leverage and to give Manchester United cash to go out and buy players,” he told The Associated Press.

Referring to the club’s Asian fan base, Schechter added: “They will pay a higher price to say they own a piece of Manchester United. Clearly the UK market would be receptive to Manchester United, but the listing requirements would require substantive disclosure, as would New York.”
 

NEXT ON SPORT24X

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Live scoring

 
 
Men
Women
Love 2 Meet
Featured Blog

Dave ask if you would like to meet your local sports heroes and stand the chance to win prizes to the value of over R40 000.

Latest blogs
Vote

After 4 rounds of this year's Absa Currie Cup, who's your favourite for the title?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

Newsletters Sign up for the Morning Glory, Super 15 and Soccer newsletters

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

Mobile Sport24 on your mobile phone - WAP, alerts, downloads, services

Forum Have your Say on Sport24's brand new Forum!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

iPhone Latest Sport24 news on your iPhone

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

Blogs Yes your opinion counts. Get it out there

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.