Almost seven months have passed since the Glazer family, the current owners, expressed their interest in exploring “strategic alternatives” for investment.
Latest Manchester United ownership bid updates
However, no clear frontrunner has emerged between Sir Jim Ratcliffe and Sheikh Jassim bin Hamad al-Thani, and the Glazers have yet to finalise their preferred bidder.
Share price impact of takeover rumours
On Thursday, reports suggesting that negotiations were underway to grant exclusivity to Sheikh Jassim caused a surge in Manchester United‘s share price.
Many interpreted this as a sign that the Qatari banker had been chosen as the preferred bidder. However, subsequent reports clarified the situation, revealing minimal progress in the proceedings.
Late on Thursday, it was revealed that the Glazers might STILL retain control of the club when Wolverhampton Wanderers visit Old Trafford on August 14.
The lengthy “approval process” that follows the granting of exclusivity could take eight to 12 weeks, thus delaying any potential change in ownership.
Sheikh Jassim Manchester United bid
In a new development, the identity of a second individual associated with Sheikh Jassim’s bid to acquire Manchester United has been revealed.
Sheikh Jassim’s company, Nine Two Holdings Limited, was officially registered in the UK on Thursday, June 15. Documents published by Companies House, the government agency responsible for such registrations, listed Sheikh Jassim as one of the directors, alongside Abdulrahman Abdulla Al Ansari.
Earlier claims of exclusivity granted to Sheikh Jassim were subsequently disputed.
Adding to the ongoing intrigue, RMC Sport recently claimed to have received confirmation that Sheikh Jassim is on the verge of being granted priority negotiations.
This suggests that discussions regarding exclusive talks are nearing a conclusion. However, it does not necessarily indicate that Sheikh Jassim has secured victory in the takeover race.
Contrary to previous reports, the BBC denied that the Glazers had exclusively focused on Sheikh Jassim, reasserting that both Sheikh Jassim and Sir Jim Ratcliffe remain frontrunners in the race for Manchester United’s ownership.
Both bidders have participated in multiple rounds of bidding, while several other parties initially expressed interest but did not progress to the later stages of negotiation.
Glazers’ search for investment alternatives
Speculation continues regarding the involvement of US hedge fund giants Elliott Management, with rumours suggesting that they have offered investment to assist the Glazers in managing debt rather than seeking a majority takeover.
The Athletic has reiterated claims that Elliott has “offered capital,” but it remains uncertain whether their offer is still under consideration or has advanced through all stages of the bidding process.
Sir Jim Ratcliffe Manchester United bid
In an effort to enhance his prospects in the ownership race, Sir Jim Ratcliffe reportedly flew to New York in the past month to hold face-to-face meetings with Manchester United representatives. The billionaire owner of INEOS hopes that this personal engagement will give him an edge over other contenders.
Meanwhile, a former bidder has suggested that the Raine Group, the US bankers overseeing the process, is primarily operating from their New York offices rather than their London location, raising questions about their management of the negotiations.
Despite the ongoing negotiations and prevailing uncertainty, Manchester United’s share price has experienced a significant surge, reaching its highest point in three months. However, the recent registration of Sheikh Jassim’s Nine Two Holdings Limited as a UK company does not necessarily indicate an imminent decision regarding the takeover.
Reports indicate that Sheikh Jassim is growing increasingly confident that his bid for Manchester United will prevail, with talkSPORT reporting that the Qatari banker is gaining assurance that an agreement can be reached.
Although the Glazers are enticed by the offer of a complete 100 percent buy-out, neither Sheikh Jassim nor Sir Jim Ratcliffe have been granted exclusivity talks, implying that the resolution of the takeover saga may extend into the beginning of the next season.
As chaos and confusion persist over who will assume control of the Red Devils, multiple parties remain engaged in negotiations with the Glazers, further exacerbating the uncertainty surrounding the future of this iconic football club.