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Chinese investors purchase AC Milan for 740 million euros

(AGI) Rome, Aug 5 - Following lengthy negotiations, a group of Chinese investors...

Chinese investors purchase AC Milan for 740 million euros
E' ufficiale il Milan diventa cinese 

(AGI) Rome, Aug 5 - Following lengthy negotiations, a group of Chinese investors operating through the management company Sino-Europe Sports Investment Management Changxing Co. Ltd. have acquired the entire stake of AC Milan owned by Fininvest. "Mr. Silvio Berlusconi, Chairman of AC Milan, has approved the preliminary contract signed by Mr. Danilo Pellegrino, C.E.O. of Fininvest, and Mr. Han Li, representative of a group of Chinese investors, concerning the purchase of the entire stake owned by Fininvest in AC Milan equal to 99.93 percent," Fininvest announced in a statement on Friday. The club was valued at 740 million euros with an approximate indebtedness of 220 million euros, Fininvest disclosed. The binding contract will be completed by the end of 2016 after the necessary authorisations are obtained from Italian and Chinese authorities. The Chinese management company primarily consists of: Haixia Capital; the State Development & Investment Corporation ("SDIC"); and Yonghong Li, Chairman of the management company and main sponsor of the investor group, with whom Fininvest had been negotiating for some time until Friday's signing. "Alongside Haixia Capital and Yonghong Li, other investors will acquire shares of AC Milan, some of which are State-controlled entities. Among those investors are companies active in the financial industry and others in industrial sectors," Fininvest stated. The company added: "The agreement requires the acquirers to undertake significant capital increases and liquidity injections aimed at strengthening AC Milan's financial structure, for a total amount of 350 million euros over a three-year period (100 million euros is to be paid-in at the 'closing'). The agreement also requires the acquirers to make a 100 million euro deposit, confirming the commitments assumed, of which 15 million euros is payable upon signing and 85 million euros within 35 days of signing." Throughout the negotiation process, and down to the drafting of the contract and its obligations, Fininvest's priority was the objective stated by Mr. Berlusconi: "To provide AC Milan, through an appropriate ownership structure, with greater financial resources now more essential for competing with the top football clubs of the world." The Chinese investors were assisted in the transaction by Rothschild & Co., their financial advisor, and Gianni, Origoni, Grippo, Cappelli & Partners, their legal advisor. Fininvest was assisted by Lazard and BNP Paribas as financial advisor and Chiomenti as legal advisor. (AGI). .