Beckham and Mas brothers take InterMiami control with Ares-backed deal

September 21 – Ares Management Corporation, an American global alternative investment manager, has closed a $150 million preferred equity deal with Inter Miami CF. 

The deal enables Jorge and Jose Mas and David Beckham to buyout the 48% of shares held by Marcelo Claure and Masayoshi Son in the club, with Ares Management joining as a preferred equity investor.

Preferred equity investors have no control of the business but cash and profits are paid back to the preferred investors first (after debt has been repaid) until they receive the agreed ‘preferred return’. No detail of the Mas and Beckham deal with Ares has been released.

The sale reportedly values InterMiami in the region of $600 million.

“This is an important milestone for Inter Miami, and we thank Marcelo and Masayoshi for believing in bringing a team to South Florida,” said Inter Miami CF CEO and managing owner Jorge Mas in a statement.

“As we look toward the future, these ownership changes underscore mine, my brother Jose’s and David’s deep belief and commitment to the success of our fútbol club. We look forward to welcoming Ares as a strategic investor and together grow Inter Miami.”

In June, Ares invested €182 million in Atletico Madrid, which saw Ares take a 33.96% stake in the Spanish club’s holding company.

“We also look forward to continuing to provide creative capital solutions to clubs and leagues in the sports franchise sector,” said Jim Miller. partner and co-head of U.S. Direct Lending at Ares.

Mark Affolter, another partner, added: “We believe that this investment is another example of how our significant scale and flexible capital enables us to provide compelling capital solutions to major sports league owners. We remain encouraged by the attractive industry tailwinds that are driving great demand for innovative investors, like Ares, in this sector.”

InterMiami debuted in the MLS in the 2020 season, becoming the league’s 25th franchise.

Beckham (pictured with the Mas brothers and MLS commissioner Don Garber) said: “We are immensely proud of the progress we’ve made over the past year and a half in Major League Soccer, and we are grateful to have had Marcelo and Masayoshi with us for the first part of our journey.

“I am more committed than ever to working with my partners and friends Jorge and Jose to build a lasting legacy, developing youth players from our academy, competing for championships regularly, and most importantly, rooting ourselves into the DNA of our community and South Florida.”

Sponsorship boost

Last week the club named cryptocurrency firm XBTO as their first ever shirt sponsor. Estimated at $4-5 million annually, it is among the biggest shirt sponsorship deals in the MLS to date.

The XBTO logo will feature on the front of InterMiami’s primary and change shirts. InterMiami currently sit in 9th place in the 14-team Eastern Conference, three points off a play off slot (top seven teams go to the play-offs).

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