Hedge Fund Scores Deal For Soccer Team

Dec 14 2007 | 12:04pm ET

Hedge fund Sisu Capital has struck a deal to buy English soccer team Coventry City, and not a moment too soon.

Just a half-hour before today’s 4 p.m. deadline—after which the team would have gone into administration—the Sky Blues accepted Sisu’s offer, under which the hedge fund will assume the club’s £38 million (US$77.6 million) debt, which the London hedge fund will restructure, as well as injecting up to £20 million (US$40.9 million) in new resources.

“This is a very exciting day in the long, proud history of Coventry City Football Club and I am positive that will be reflected in the attendance for the game against Southampton,” outgoing Chairman Joe Elliott said. “I am sure that Ray Ranson and Sisu Capital will help drive Coventry City forward into a brand-new era for the club.”

The deal still requires the approval of 90% of Coventry City’s shareholders, but two major shareholders, who together own 71.4% of the club, have already accepted the offer.

Ironically, Sisu’s team will tomorrow face the other football team whose acquisition it sought: Southampton Football Club. The hedge fund’s £40 million (US$81.7 million) offer for Saints, however, went nowhere, and the club is expected exit its “under offer” period.

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