The Financial Times are reporting that Alisher Usmanov made a bid for Stan Kroenke’s Arsenal shareholding last month, tabling a bid worth $1.3bn.
The report says that Usmanov, “…conveyed the offer in a letter to Stan Kroenke, the US sports mogul, who controls a 67 per cent stake.
“The approach, made last month, valued the club at $2bn. Mr Kroenke has yet to formally respond.
“He is understood not to have dismissed the idea out of hand at first. However, he has since informally indicated he is not interested in selling to Mr Usmanov or anyone else.”
The Uzbeki oligarch has been very much an outsider since he began buying shares. He currently holds a 30.04% stake, but has not been offered a place on the board.
He and Kroenke are not on speaking terms, and it’s understood the American would never sanction a sale to Usmanov, even if it meant a large profit.
Kroenke has been under more scrutiny than he might have liked in recent times, his silence has been deafening during the difficult period of this season, and there is certainly an appetite amongst Arsenal fans for a change of ownership.
Whether Usmanov is the right man is very much open to debate, he’s currently benefiting from being ‘not Kroenke’, but perhaps this might encourage others to test the majority shareholder’s resolve.
The FT report says that other bidders are circling, and Arseblog News understands that this is definitely the case, with some serious plans underway elsewhere.
With ongoing issues with the building of a new stadium in LA, and the likelihood of more fan pressure, it will be interesting to see what happens over the next few weeks.
It looks like the multi-billion dollar gloves are coming off in the battle for Arsenal.