If the sale process was completed, Jean-Michel Aulas would retain the reins of the Rhone club for at least three years.
OL Groupe, the holding company representing Olympique Lyonnais, announced on Monday that it had entered into “exclusive negotiationswith a view to acquiring a majority stake in the group Eagle Football Holdings, llc, belonging to the American John Textor, who already owns several football clubs.
«This operation would lead to a complete sale of the interests of Pathé and IDG“, which represent respectively 19.36% and 19.85% of the capital of OL Groupe, “and the progressive liquidity of Holnest, the family holding company of Jean-Michel Aulas“, historical president of the club, since 1987, which holds 27.72% of the capital, specifies the press release of the group, which had requested Monday the suspension of its listing on the stock exchange. The Chinese investment fund IDG Capital and Pathé, a group led by the Seydoux family, announced that they wanted to sell their stakes last March.
Fortune estimated at 3 billion dollars
Aged 56, Textor is already a reference shareholder with his group of several football clubs and in particular Botafogo (Brazilian 1st div., 90%) and Racing White Daring Molenbeek (Belgian D2, 80%), where he has maintained the president already in place, and present for 40% in the capital of Crystal Palace (1st div. English). John Textor, whose fortune is estimated at 3 billion dollars and who specializes in particular in the broadcasting of online sports, special effects and images of celebrities in virtual reality, should also immediately invest 86 M EUR to strengthen the financial structure of OL Group.
The transaction should make it possible to continue the strategy put in place by the Lyon club, to strengthen the sports teams and the infrastructures, further specifies the press release from OLG. Jean-Michel Aulas and the club’s current management team would remain in place, it is said.
Furthermore, this disposal should lead to the launch of a “friendly takeover bid (OPA), at a price of 3 euros per share and 265.57 euros per Osrane (reimbursable bonds), which would possibly be followed, if the conditions are met, by a squeeze-out corresponding to a value of OL Groupe estimated at EUR 798 million as of July 1, 2022 and EUR 884 million after the capital increase“, further details the press release from OL Groupe.
The objective of Textor and Aulas (73), who would therefore retain his position as Chairman and CEO for the next few seasons, is to bring Olympique Lyonnais back to the top after a disappointing season that ended in 8th place in the League. 1 and a non-European qualification.