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Todd Boehly has vowed to build on Chelsea’s “remarkable history of success” after completing his £4.25billion purchase of the Stamford Bridge club.
The 48-year-old US tycoon’s consortium finally took the Stamford Bridge helm on Monday, having finalised the record sports franchise purchase from Roman Abramovich.
Boehly’s consortium fought off 11 serious rivals to become the new Chelsea owners, in a sale process that started on March 2 and comprised more than 250 enquiries.
Los Angeles Dodgers co-owner Boehly will “share joint control and equal governance of the club” with main partner Clearlake Capital investment firm.
Boehly will serve as chairman of the holding company, backing up his status as controlling owner – a set-up reached by virtue of his robust working relationship with Clearlake chief Behdad Eghbali.
“We are honoured to become the new custodians of Chelsea Football Club,” Boehly said.
“We’re all in – 100 per cent – every minute of every match.
Consortium led by Todd Boehly and Clearlake Capital completes acquisition of Chelsea Football Club.
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) May 30, 2022
“Our vision as owners is clear: we want to make the fans proud.
“Along with our commitment to developing the youth squad and acquiring the best talent, our plan of action is to invest in the club for the long term and build on Chelsea’s remarkable history of success.
“I personally want to thank ministers and officials in the British Government, and the Premier League, for all their work in making this happen.”
Russian-Israeli billionaire Abramovich’s 19-year tenure as Chelsea owner is now at an end.
The 55-year-old steered Chelsea to 19 major trophies, changing the face of English football forever with his major investment and drive for success.
Abramovich officially put the club up for sale on March 2, amid Russia’s continued invasion of Ukraine.
The UK Government then sanctioned Abramovich on March 10, claiming to have proven his links to Vladimir Putin.
Chelsea were able to continue to operate thanks to a strict, temporary Government licence, with Abramovich’s other UK assets frozen.
Downing Street, the European Union and the Portuguese Government had to issue new licences to allow the sale to be completed.
Swiss billionaire Hansjorg Wyss and US tycoon Mark Walter are the other main members of the consortium.
Clearlake Capital co-founders Eghbali and Jose Feliciano revealed their delight at pulling off the deal for Chelsea, and immediately pointed to a bright future.
“We are excited to commit the resources to continue Chelsea’s leading role in English and global football, and as an engine for football talent development,” Eghbali and Feliciano said in a joint statement.
“We also want to thank the authorities for all their work throughout the process.
“As pioneers in sports and media investing, we are thrilled to partner with Todd and the rest of the consortium to meaningfully grow the club as a global platform.
“Together, we will expand the club’s investment across infrastructure, technology, and sports science to support the incredible Chelsea football and commercial teams – all with the goal of leveraging this growth to fuel even more on-pitch success.”
The sale was approved after the Government was satisfied that Abramovich would not benefit financially from the transaction.
A Government spokesperson said: “Today’s change of ownership marks a new chapter for Chelsea Football Club in the best interests of its fans, the club and the wider football community.
“The club is now no longer subject to the sanctions imposed on Roman Abramovich, an individual who has enabled Putin’s brutal and barbaric invasion of Ukraine.
“Since sanctions were imposed on Abramovich on 10 March, we have worked tirelessly to ensure the club can continue to play football, while maintaining the integrity of our sanctions regime.
“Chelsea’s long-term future is now secured and binding commitments have been received which ensure sanctioned individuals cannot financially benefit from the sale. The Government retains control to ensure that this is the case.
“We have begun the process of ensuring the proceeds are used for humanitarian purposes in Ukraine that result from Russian aggression. Further details will be set out in due course.”