The takeover of Italian giants AC Milan by Chinese group Sino-Europe Sports has been completed today, according to Sky Italia.
Representatives from both groups met in the morning in a Milan law firm and signed the documents which hand over the ownership and management of the club to the consortium headed by businessman Yonghong Li.
Negotiations for the long and complex £630m-worth deal have been ongoing since August 2016 and the completion marks the end of Silvio Berlusconi’s 31-year tenure in charge of the club, during which the Rossoneri achieved 29 trophies, including five Champions Leagues.
The new owners are expected to hold a press conference on Friday which will detail the composition of the new board – expected to include Li’s associate David Han and designated managing director Marco Fassone.
About 100 people gathered in Piazza Belgioioso, outside the building in wihch the meeting was taking place, to witness a historic day for the club and the end of an era for Berlusconi.
A statement released by current owners Fininvest around lunch-time officialised the so-called “closing”.
“Fininvest has completed the sale of the entire stake owned in AC Milan – equal to 99.93 per cent – to Rossoneri Sport Investment Lux,” it says.
“The terms of the agreement are the same disclosed in August and reflect of an aggregate evaluation of AC Milan equal to €740m, which includes the club’s indebtedness, equal to €220m as of June 30, 2016”.
Managing director Adriano Galliani is also poised to exit the board amid speculation that he is to take the job as president of the Italian FA, and was clapped off by onlookers for his unforgettable efforts for the club.
New owner Yonghong Li said: “I thank Berlusconi and Fininvest for their trust, and the fans for their patience. From today we will start building up our future.”
AC Milan take on Inter on Saturday at 11.30pm, in what will be the first “Chinese” Milan derby in history – as their city rivals are owned by Chinese company Suning Commerce Group.
Source: Sky Sports