Chelsea Prepares for Rapid Sale Process

    • Chelsea FC is expected to be sold soon.
    • The Raine Group will reduce potential buyers to a shortlist of up to four this week.

With all bids in for Chelsea FC, the decision-making process is expected to quickly produce a new owner.

Though there were as many as 200 interested parties, the number of submitted bids was expected to be more like 10-15. The deadline for offers was Friday.

  • Merchant bank The Raine Group, which is overseeing the sale, is expected to reduce the list of potential buyers to a shortlist of up to four bidders early this week.
  • Among the most serious bidders are Los Angeles Dodgers co-owner Todd Boehly’s group (a bid near $3.3 billion), New York Jets owner Woody Johnson ($2.6 billion), Saudi Media Group ($3.6 billion), Chicago Cubs owner Tom Ricketts (over $3 billion), and British business owner Nick Candy ($3.3 billion).

The team was seized by the U.K. government after it issued sanctions on previous owner Roman Abramovich over his connections to the Russian government. The sale is expected to be expedited due to the sensitive nature of the situation.

Oaktree Joins In

Asset manager Oaktree Capital made a bid for Chelsea. The firm had $166 billion in assets under management at the end of 2021, $98 billion of which was in credit strategies.

Oaktree owns Ligue 2 club Caen and was one of four private equity firms to bid on a slice of Ligue 1’s media rights.

Another private equity firm, Aethel Partners, said it made a $2.6 billion bid for Chelsea.