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New York Yankees to Invest in Serie A Champions AC Milan

Yankee Global Enterprises is expected to join RedBird Capital and others on a $1.3 billion takeover of defending Scudetto winners.

The New York Yankees are about to expand their soccer portfolio.

Yankee Global Enterprises, the Bronx Bombers’ commercial arm, will purchase a minority stake in defending Serie A champions AC Milan, the Financial Times was first to report on Tuesday. The news comes after RedBird Capital agreed in June to purchase a controlling stake in the club for €1.3 billion.

Main Street Advisors, a fund that boasts LeBron James and Drake as investors, will also take on a stake in the club. Milan’s current majority owner, Elliot Management Corp, are expected to retain a small equity share following the deal.

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This isn’t the Yankees’ first foray into the most popular sport on Earth. The 27-time World Series champs own 20% of Major League Soccer’s New York City FC and host a majority of the club’s home games at Yankee Stadium. City Football Group, which operates reigning Premier League champs Manchester City, owns the other 80% of NYCFC. Man City played a pair of summertime friendly matches in the Bronx in 2013 and 2014.

For what it’s worth to AC Milan fans, New York’s Boys in Blue just so happen to be the defending MLS Cup champions.

Even though it is unclear exactly what stake the Yankees will hold in the club, its significance can’t be understated. The New York Yankees are the most recognizable American sports brand in the world, and as AC Milan is coming off a championship season, it’s easy to see the club’s global popularity continue to rise as a result of the move. The Yankees also own a 26% stake in the YES Network, making American broadcasts of club matches a real possibility. YES has had previous agreements with global soccer clubs, having aired tape-delayed broadcasts of Manchester United matches early in the network’s history.

Overall, Forbes values Yankee Global Enterprises at $6.81 billion, with properties including the YES Network, NYCFC, and Legends Hospitality, the company the organization founded alongside Jerry Jones and the Dallas Cowboys.

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