There are reports that the Chinese don’t have all the money required to buy Milan yet but Sino-Europe Sports assures that everything will happen as planned.
Paolo Berlusconi – brother of Silvio and VP of Milan – spoke about the sale of the club earlier this week, expressing total calmness: “Our tranquility derives from this: there isn’t a tycoon or a single character,” he said, “but an organization supported by the Chinese government.”
But according to Bloomberg.com, the Chinese group – which has already made a non-refundable €100m deposit to the coffers of Milan’s holding company Fininvest – “has been hunting for more investors since it agreed on a deal with Silvio Berlusconi’s Fininvest SpA. The consortium didn’t have all the financing in place when it agreed last month to purchase Milan for €740 million ($830 million) including debt.”
Sino-Europe Sports sent an email to Bloomberg as a reply, reassuring that everything is okay. The group, which is led by Yonghong Li (you can read his previous statements here), confirmed that it “is in the final stage of the acquisition and has been providing project information to existing financing partners and other interested parties as a part of the closing process, which will be completed at the end of this year. The acquisition of the funds will be also fully in place at the same time.”
Bloomberg writes that “the Chinese consortium is seeking money from new partners to help meet its stated goal of completing the deal by year-end.” The American website also claims that they’ve been told by 2 people that Li and his group are considering to build a new stadium for Milan.
Li’s people have told Bloomberg that the Sino-Europe Sports Chairman is confident about raising the funds in time. As confirmed by Fininvest in the announcement over the preliminary contract, Yonghong Li is joined by Haixia Capital Management Co., an investment firm controlled by China’s government owned State Development & Investment Corp. They also confirmed at the time that “other investors will acquire shares of Milan, some of which are State-controlled entities. Among those investors are companies active in the financial industry and others in industrial sectors.”
Bloomberg writes that in order to lure more investors “the consortium has been telling potential partners they could earn outsized returns if Milan eventually lists on a Chinese stock exchange.” The website adds that “in an earlier draft of the fundraising materials, the Chinese investor group indicated the team’s value could multiply several times in the long term to reach €2.9 billion, rivaling top clubs like Real Madrid and Manchester United, according to documents obtained by Bloomberg.
“The acquirer predicted its plan to revive the storied team would help annual revenue more than double to €500 million in five years. It plans to open up the Chinese market, the documents show.”