Friday, May 18, 2007

Another American eyes English Premiership clubs

A fourth USA-based takeover of an English Premier League club is on the cards after wealthy businessman Will Chang reportedly announced he is considering an acquisition. Chang, owner of Major League Soccer club DC United and chairman of the California-based Westlake Group, is understood be considering two as-yet unnamed clubs. “The English Premier League is the best-managed and most powerful of all football leagues in the world today. It is the group’s intention to purchase a stake in the very near future,” he said at a conference in Beijing.

"A lot of people have said the English Premier League has been fully valued but I think there's still a lot of value. There's also value in other leagues in Europe which haven't caught up with England," he told Bloomberg. "Americans are so much more advanced in terms of how they monetize sports marketing. These guys who are very, very smart are going into Europe because they think they can develop more opportunities using those brands. We think we can do the same."

Chang said he may buy on his own, on behalf of DC United or for Westlake, while other partners may be involved. General Electric Co. said this week it may purchase at least one European team. Chang said he wasn't involved with GE.

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