December 14 – Las Vegas-based businessman Bill Foley’s consortium has completed the acquisition of Premier League club AFC Bournemouth in a deal said to be worth more than £100 million.
The club confirmed that former owner Maxim Demin sold his 100% stake to Black Knight Football Club, of which Foley is the Managing General Partner. Foley’s group has a number of partners including a 50.1% interest for Cannae Holdings, and certain other investors many of whom invested in the Vegas Golden Knights.
The minority ownership group is led by Hollywood actor and producer Michael B. Jordan and Nullah Sarker (The Players Tribune, Davis Cup). It is Jordan’s first professional sports ownership. The club said he and Sarker will work with Foley in areas “including global marketing and internationalisation of the club”.
Foley, who takes over the chair of the club with immediate effect and who has bought a home in the local area, said: “I have tremendous respect for the passion and support the Bournemouth community shows for this club and believe that connection to the community is the foundation for success of any sports team.”.
“We will move forward with an ‘always advance, never retreat’ approach that has defined all of my endeavours. I am committed to work with the best football and business minds available to enhance player development, facilities, and the fan experience to put AFC Bournemouth in the best possible position to succeed.”
Foley said he is committed to providing the investment needed to keep Bournemouth – currently in 14th place – in the Premier League.
In a letter to Bournemouth fans, Foley said: “I think you will find that our philosophy and vision fits well with your goals for the team: progress, sustainable success, and a positive impact in the community. We know better than to expect instant gratification, but we will help AFC Bournemouth make steady progress toward our goals.”
A club statement said they would “immediately begin construction of a state-of-the-art training centre and increase financial commitment to the AFC Bournemouth women’s team and girls’ teams.”
Foley, 77, made his money in the insurance industry before buying National Hockey League team Vegas Golden Knights, the first major league sports team in Las Vegas. Foley has a reported net worth of £1.2 billion and also owns a winery and several restaurants.
Bournemouth become the seventh Premier League club to be majority owned by US investors.
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