D-Day has arrived for Roman Abramovich as he has now put his beloved club Chelsea on sale. Amidst mounting pressure, the Russian owner finally announced that he will welcome bids for the club. However, Roman Abramovich has taken a firm stance that he will not sell the club to potential buyers from “two” particular nations. Though Abramovich has decided to sell the club, he is reportedly in no hurry to get rid of the process. Abramovich will study all the financial as well as ethical aspects and then only hand over the club to new owners.
Since taking over the club in 2003, this is the first instance where Roman Abramovich is anticipating offers for a sale. Abramovich had repeatedly conveyed that he has no intention of selling the club which he has nurtured. But unwanted issues have forced Abramovich to part ways with the Blues. The Russian invasion of Ukraine has taken a toll over Abramovich’s Chelsea ownership. Abramovich faces heavy sanctions from Britain as he is one of the oligarchs of Russian President Vladimir Putin. Since Abramovich stated that selling Chelsea is for the “best interests of the club”, the outgoing owner won’t be easily passing on the future of his club.
Two countries barred by Abramovich from bidding for Chelsea
As potential buyers are bracing up their bids, some may have gotten a setback. Abramovich has asked his delegates to not entertain potential buyers from two ‘specific’ nations. The two countries are Saudi Arabia and China. Abramovich has heavily invested in Chelsea, with the amount racking up to £1.5 billion. The Russian would certainly want to recover it but is in no hurry of the sale. Abramovich has hired the co-founder of investment bank Raine Group LLC, Joe Ravitch to negotiate a deal on his behalf.
Ravitch has given an insight on how the sale of the European Champions will go through. “We are not going to rush anything. It is very important that Chelsea have the right owner to guide the club forward,” said Ravitch. Further according to Reuters, the search for a new owner won’t be carried out in Saudi or China. Reuters also reports that the club administrators and Abramovich want a smooth transition in the ownership, and avoid adding any controversy to the ongoing problems.
Abramovich asks to set-up a charitable foundation
Roman Abramovich will however not be pocketing all that will come from the club’s sale. His love for the club was once again evident as Abramovich mentioned in his statement that he will be donating the net proceeds from the sale. The Russian wrote, “I have instructed my team to set up a charitable foundation where all net proceeds from the sale will be donated. The foundation will be for the benefit of all victims of the war in Ukraine. This includes providing critical funds towards the urgent and immediate needs of victims, as well as supporting the long-term work of recovery.”
Many investors have already readied their offers since Abramovich announced the sale. Swiss billionaire Hansjorg Wyss said that he contacted Abramovich’s camp over the sale. Wyss has expressed his desire to take-over Chelsea “with a consortium consisting of six to seven investors”. Meanwhile, UFC star Conor McGregor too conveyed his wish to bid for the ownership of Chelsea.
McGregor wrote on his Twitter account, “I wish to explore this” with a screenshot from a Whatsapp chat that gave him information over Chelsea’s sale. However, Thomas Tuchel has made his concerns clear that the whole situation is “distracting” the team’s preparations. While many are in line to buy Chelsea, it would be better for the club if the process is quick and easy.
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