Thursday 22 February 2018

Usmanov to increase Gunners stake - report

Alisher Usmanov hopes to increase his stake in Arsenal to overtake Stan Kroenke as the club's main shareholder, according to reports.

The Russian billionaire currently owns a 27pc share in the Barclays Premier League title contenders and hopes to buy another 2.9pc in order for him to surpass American Stan Kroenke, who currently owns a 29.8pc stake.

Should Usmanov succeed in increasing his share to 29.9pc, he would still be left 0.1pc short of the stake required to trigger an automatic takeover.

Usmanov and Kroenke have both been increasing their stakes in the club over the last few years and the Uzbekistan-born metals and mining tycoon did not rule out completing a full takeover of the Londoners today.

"Today, we have 27pc. Our objective is to bring that up to a blocking stake of 29.9pc," Bloomberg quotes Usmanov as saying on Russian state TV.

"And from there, we will just keep looking," he added.

"You can never tell about what happens in life."

Although Usmanov terms the increase a "blocking" stake, if he did increase his share to 29.9pc he would just have a bigger say in the club's business dealings, rather than block any other party taking over the club.

Lady Nina Bracewell-Smith, one of the club's other two shareholders, put her 15.9pc stake up for sale in April.

Non-executive director Danny Fiszman, who controls 16pc of shares, is the club's other major shareholder.

Press Association

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