Africa’s Richest Man Interested In Buying English Soccer Club Arsenal

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Written by Peter Pedroncelli

Aliko Dangote, a businessman and billionaire based in Nigeria, is interested in a potential offer to purchase English Premier League club Arsenal in future, having previously made an offer for the club which was subsequently turned down.

The offer that he made in 2010 for the London club failed, as he attempted to buy the 16 per cent of shares that were available at the time, but he is determined not to give up on his mission to own a part of the club he supports.

Now worth eight times his net worth at the time of his initial Arsenal purchase effort, the Bloomberg Billionaires Index puts Dangote’s fortune at $15.7billion (55th position on the index).

That means that he has more money than both of the current Arsenal majority shareholders, Stan Kroenke, owner of the National Football League’s St. Louis Rams with 67%, and Russian Oligarch Alisher Usmanov.

Arsenal is currently valued at $1.49bn, and Dangote has reiterated the appeal that the club has for him as an investor, telling Bloomberg that in future he will likely make a second offer based on a strategy that he is implementing.

“I still hope, one day at the right price, that I’ll buy the team,” Dangote told Bloomberg. “I might buy it, not at a ridiculous price but a price that the owners won’t want to resist. I know my strategy.”

The tycoon did reveal that he does not expect to do so in the next few years, however, as his focus is currently on other investment priorities.

“We have $16 billion-worth of investments in the next few years. Right now, I want to take my own business to a certain level. Once I finish on that trajectory, then maybe an offer will follow,” he added.

Dangote is a Nigerian industrialist, whose interest in football has seen him stand for president of the Nigerian Football Federation in the past.

The billionaire’s CV is an impressive one, having founded the Dangote Group, a manufacturing empire that is well known throughout Africa and the world, and he was previously the head of the Nigerian stock exchange.