From Denver Broncos to Chelsea – world’s most expensive sporting takeovers

The takeover process at Manchester United is set to reach another milestone as Sir Jim Ratcliffe and Sheikh Jassim bin Hamad Al Thani are expected to make improved offers.

A figure of around £5billion has been given for the deals – less than the £6billion valuation reported by the current owners, the Glazer family, but an expected world record for a sports team purchase.

Here, the PA news agency examines the world’s most expensive sporting acquisitions.

Denver Broncos

NFL side Denver Broncos were bought by the Walton-Penner Family Ownership Group for $4.65 billion (about £3.8 billion) last summer. The new ownership team was led by Rob Walton, heir to the fortunes of US retail giant Walmart. Lewis Hamilton and former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice are also part of the group.


The current Premier League record is held by the Todd Boehly-led consortium that took over Chelsea last year after former owner Roman Abramovich’s assets were frozen over his ties to Vladimir Putin. The total investment of £4.25bn, consisting of buyout and money poured into the club, is a world record. American billionaire Boehly also owns shares in the Los Angeles Dodgers and LA Lakers.

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Brooklyn Networks

Taiwanese-Canadian billionaire Joseph Tsai, co-founder of tech company Alibaba, acquired a majority stake in NBA franchise Brooklyn Nets and their Barclays Center home in 2019. Financial details were kept secret, but Bloomberg reported an investment of US$3.5 billion (about £2.85 billion).

Carolina Panther

American hedge fund manager David Tepper bought the NFL franchise Carolina Panthers in May 2018 for nearly $2.3 billion (about £1.85 billion). Tepper was formerly a minority owner of the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Houston missiles

Houston restaurant billionaire Tilman Fertitta bought NBA team Rockets for $2.2 billion (about £1.8 billion) in 2017 – a record for a US sports team at the time.

Los Angeles Dodgers

Boehly was instrumental in another of the sport’s biggest takeovers — Guggenheim Baseball Management’s 2012 purchase of the LA Dodgers baseball team. The group, which included Boehly and former basketball player Magic Johnson, paid $2.15 billion (approx £.75 billion) and oversaw a transformation that saw the Dodgers win the 2020 World Series.

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