LONDON – A consortium led by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment fund (PIF) officially took over Newcastle United, the Premier League announced on Thursday.
‘Following the completion of the Premier League’s Owners’ and Directors’ Test, the club has been sold to the consortium with immediate effect’, the Premier League statement said.
The consortium includes PCR Capital Partners and RB Sports & Media. PIF hold the majority of shares with 80 percent, while PCP Capital Partners and RB Sports & Media each has 10 percent.
PIF’s Governor Yasir al – Rumayyan said: ‘We are extremely proud to become the new owners of Newcastle United, one of the most famous clubs in English football. We thank Newcastle fans for their tremendously loyal support over the years and we are excited to work together with them’.
Al – Rumayyan will serve as Non – Executive Chairman of Newcastle United. Amanda Staveley, chief executive of PCR Capital Partner, will have one seat on the board. Jamie Reuben will also be a director of the Club, representing RB Sports & Media.
Newcastle United was previously by British businessman, and CEO of sporting goods company Sports Direct, Mike Ashley, who bought the team in 2007 for $175 million. Many fans were unhappy with Ashley’s regim criticizing him for his lack of investment in the club.
There were disputes over the $410 million takeover of the club by PIF concerning how much control Saudi Arabia’s government would have in running Newcastle. The Premier League said in its statement hose disputes were settled after having received ‘legally binding assurances that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia will not control Newcastle United Football Club’.