November 2 – US sports investor Bill Foley, majority owner of Premier League Bournemouth, has reportedly held provisional takeover talks with Scottish Premier League club Hibernian.
Foley, who has an estimated to have a net worth of $1.6 billion through his Fidelity National Finance insurance business.
Not afraid of taking a punt on sports, he paid $500 million for the Vegas Golden Knights to enter the NHL in 2017, winning the 2023 Stanley Cup and creating one of the league’s most valuable franchises.
He acquired Bournemouth at the end of last year for about £120 million at a time when they looked destined for relegation. Instead Bournemouth defied expectations and stayed up, though they will likely be in the relegation dog fight again, currently sitting one point above the relegation places.
Foley owns a minority stake in Ligue 1 side Lorient, and his Black Knight Football and Entertainment group is looking to build further with a minority investment in Hibs.
The Edinburgh club is owned by the family of American entrepreneur Ron Gordon who died in February this year. They are looking to bring in new investors though do not want to give up control of the club.
Foley has previously talked about his fascination with Scottish football, telling the men in Blazers podcast: “They play hard, Scots are tough. They play a tough brand of football. And I believe there are opportunities to make one of the number four, five or six SPL [Scottish Premiership] teams, to get them to number three and they play in Europe.
“I believe we can pull that off with not a gigantic investment – and be a minority investor, be supportive of that club, and then work on sponsorship together because we have a whole sponsorship and I know we can help an SPL team. We’re working towards that goal right now with a particular team.”
Foley said that he saw his investment in other clubs as potentially a route to develop players and make them Premier League ready for Bournemouth.
Foley is the preferred bidder for an Australian A-League expansion team to be based in Auckland, New Zealand, and which would begin play in the 2024-25 season. He is also said to be in discussions with unspecified South American clubs.
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