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Sale Of Minority Stake In Fenway Sports Group Reportedly Falls Through

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It was rumored that RedBall Acquisitions was looking to buy up to a 25% stake in FSG, but couldn’t raise enough funds

Tottenham Hotspur v Liverpool - UEFA Champions League - Final - Wanda Metropolitano Photo by Mike Egerton/PA Images via Getty Images

In October, the Wall Street Journal reported some details about a deal for RedBall Acquisitions Corporation to buy a minority stake in Fenway Sports Group. RedBall was looking for a 20-25% stake in FSG, which includes Liverpool, the Boston Red Sox, and stakes in a NASCAR team among other holdings. FSG is currently valued for approximately $8 billion. Today, news broke that the deal is now dead in the water.

Dan Primack, a contributor for Axios, wrote that RedBall, co-chaired by Billy Beane of Moneyball fame and banker/investor Gerry Cardinale, failed to generate enough outside funds to buy their stake despite a promising IPO. With RedBall being a publicly traded company, it would have allowed people to buy stock to own shares of Liverpool and the other FSG holdings after a reverse merger (which I absolutely knew was a thing 10 minutes ago). The deal would have also provided a nice injection of capital for the teams under the FSG umbrella, especially at a time with so much financial uncertainty due to the covid-19 pandemic. It was still not clear just how much would have been made available to Liverpool specifically and how the money might have been used.

There is still a chance the RedBall could continue to negotiate with FSG for a private equity stake, or both parties could opt to move on. FSG have long been open to selling a minority stake in Liverpool, but have no intentions to sell the club outright.