About Boardroom

Boardroom is a media network that covers the business of sports, entertainment. From the ways that athletes, executives, musicians and creators are moving the business world forward to new technologies, emerging leagues, and industry trends, Boardroom brings you all the news and insights you need to know...

At the forefront of industry change, Boardroom is committed to unique perspectives on and access to the news, trending topics and key players you need to know.

All Rights Reserved. 2022.

Glazers Take Big Step Toward Selling Manchester United to Qatari Sheikh

Last Updated: June 30, 2023
Sheikh Jassim bin Hamad al-Thani could receive exclusive negotiating rights for the Glazers’ Man United sale, handing him pole position to take control of the iconic club.

Manchester United fans drew closer on Thursday to realizing their long-held dream of #GlazersOut. Reuters exclusively reported that the Premier League football club and the family that has owned its controlling stake since 2005 are discussing an exclusive negotiating window for a potential sale with Sheikh Jassim bin Hamad al-Thani of Qatar. If consummated, the transaction is expected to be worth upwards of $6 billion, giving it a chance to become the most expensive team sale in the history of pro sports.

Though this exclusivity has not been confirmed as of this writing, such a move would make the 44-year-old Qatari billionaire a truly prohibitive favorite in the race to buy one of the most valuable teams in global sport.

Amid protracted Man United sale rumors, a long-discussed candidate has been Jim Ratcliffe, Chairman and CEO of London-based chemical company INEOS Group Limited. Reuters reports that his takeover pitch currently lacks favor in that he intended for the Glazer family to retain some manner of stake in the club, while the Sheikh Jassim bid is understood to buy them out of their equity entirely.

Sign up for our newsletter

Get on our list for weekly sports business, industry trends, interviews, and more.

Who is Sheikh Jassim bin Hamad al-Thani of Qatar?

A leading member of the House of Thani that controls Qatar, Sheikh Jassim is the son of Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, who served as the nation’s Emir — think “head of state,” but with more than just a touch of monarchy — from 1995 to 2013 before abdicating the role. Though he was previously heir apparent to the throne, Jassim removed himself from the line of succession in 2003.

The Glazer family took over Manchester United, routinely recognized as one of the most popular sports teams in the world, in 2005 when Malcolm Glazer purchased nearly 30% of the organization at an overall valuation of approximately $1.5 billion. Under their tenure, the club won five Premier League titles, one FA Cup, one EFL Cup, and a UEFA Champions League crown.

Today, the “Red Devils” are estimated to be worth approximately $6 billion, but since such a significant portion of the Glazers’ purchasing capital was borrowed, they’ve carried a significant debt load in the years since.

Propped up by a petroleum-backed largesse in the form of the sovereign Qatar Investment Authority and its Qatar Sports Investments (QSi) arm — which also owns French champions Paris Saint-Germain and sports television company beIN Media Group — Sheikh Jassim won’t have that problem.

Boy-oh-boy will he ever not.

Whether Man United fans will ultimately consider his arrival a win, well, that’s a far more uncomfortable question we won’t attempt to answer just yet.

Read More:

Betting & Fantasy November 28, 2023

UEFA Champions League Odds 2023-24

The race is on for the world’s biggest prize in club sports. Check out the latest 2024 UEFA Champions League odds at FanDuel Sportsbook. POST LAST UPDATED: NOV. 28, 2023 On Saturday, June 1,…

About The Author
Sam Dunn
Sam Dunn
Sam Dunn is the Managing Editor of Boardroom. Before joining the team, he was an editor and multimedia talent for several sports and culture verticals at Minute Media and an editor, reporter, and site manager at SB Nation. A specialist in content strategy, copywriting, and SEO, he has additionally worked as a digital consultant in the corporate services, retail, and tech industries. He cannot be expected to be impartial on any matter regarding the Florida Gators or Atlanta Braves. Follow him on Twitter @RealFakeSamDunn.