Barcelona Strikes Deals to Narrow Debt

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FC Barcelona is the latest team to sell off some of its assets to recover from financial woes from the pandemic.

Delegates for the La Liga club approved the cession of up to 25% of income from the league’s TV rights for 25 years, as well as the sale of a minority share of its licensing and merchandising division

Barcelona is estimated to earn around $631 million for the deals, helping turn around its $506 million loss (after tax) during the 2020-21 season. The team is also redeveloping Camp Nou as part of a $1.6 billion project. At one point, the team had nearly $1.37 billion in debt.

The vote to make the financial moves wasn’t close. 

  • The majority of delegates representing fans (88%) voted in favor of selling a 49.95% share of Barca Licensing & Merchandising. Offers must have a repurchase option.
  • 87% of the delegates also voted for the TV rights deal — which could go to one or move investors — and/or obtaining financing based on the rights.

See Ya, CVC

Barcelona did not partake in La Liga’s 2021 agreement with CVC Capital Partners, in which the firm invested $2.1 billion for an 8.25% stake in the league’s media rights for 50 years.

“We want to recover this asset in 25 years,” Barcelona president Joan Laporta said. “The [CVC] operation that was presented was collective, and Barca have their own special value.”

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