PARIS (AP) — The French soccer league announced an investment deal Friday with private equity firm CVC Capital Partners as part of a new commercial subsidiary in charge of marketing media rights.
The league said its general assembly unanimously approved the creation of the subsidiary and CVC’s commitment to invest 1.5 billion euros ($1.66 billion).
The league, known as the LFP, said most of the financial contribution will be paid to professional soccer clubs, with another share used for amateur soccer and the repayment of a state-guaranteed loan contracted in 2020.
Some of the money will also be used for a reserve fund and to start the commercial subsidiary’s activities, the league said.
In return for its investment, CVC will hold a 13.0% stake in the league, valuing the entire capital of the commercial subsidiary at 11.5 billion euros ($12.7 billion).
The league said it expects the deal to be completed by the end of July after consultation with the LFP’s staff representative bodies and the green light from competition authorities.
Last year, a large majority of Spain’s top soccer clubs, with the notable exceptions of Real Madrid and Barcelona, ratified an investment plan with the same private equity firm.
Away from soccer, CVC has also invested in sports such as Formula One, rugby and volleyball.
Following the collapse of its record-breaking TV rights contract with Spanish-based broadcaster Mediapro, the French soccer league was forced last year to ask the government to set up a financial rescue plan amid huge revenue losses exacerbated by the coronavirus pandemic.
The deal with Mediapro should have been worth more than 4 billion euros ($4.8 billion) over four years for the top two leagues but collapsed after only four months.
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