After months of drama over a possible sale, Manchester United may have finally chosen a bidder.
The Glazer family will sell the majority of the club to British billionaire Jim Ratcliffe and INEOS, according to The Sun. Within the next several days, the Raine Group — which is in charge of the sale — will officially announce the winning bid.
Reports suggest that Ratcliffe is offering more than $6.3 billion for a majority stake that could still allow other private equity firms to invest. The Carlyle Group, Ares Management, and Elliott Management could all be potential bidders.
The prospective deal would make Qatari banker Sheikh Jassim bin Hamad Al Thani the runner-up.
He recently offered $1 billion toward new facilities at Old Trafford, in addition to $6.3 billion to buy 100% of the team — but the club’s interests apparently lie elsewhere.
An Arduous Process
The sale process, which first began in November, has seen three grueling rounds of bidding, drawn out to the point that many have questioned whether the Glazers want to sell the team at all.
The last deadline was April 28. A new owner was supposed to be announced by May 8, a date that passed without an official announcement.
The Glazers are extremely unpopular with United fans, who have publicly protested what they see as the family’s failed stewardship of the club.