Atlético Madrid have officially announced today at an event in Beijing that the Dalian Wanda Group has purchased a 20% stake in the club through a €45 million investment.
The chairman of the group, Wang Jianlin, is worth $13.2bn according to Forbes, and he is looking to expand his business empire.
The 60-year-old is China’s second richest man behind Jack Ma of Alibaba, and this is thanks-in-part to heading up China’s biggest property company – Dalian Wanda.
It is the first Chinese company to invest money in a top European football club.
“Wanda Group’s capital contribution in the Club will allow Atlético de Madrid to significantly shore up its balance sheet, as well as accelerate the growth of its brand globally,” read a statement on the official club website.
Miguel Ángel Gil remains the main shareholder, now with around 52% shares, according to Marca. Enrique Cerezo, club president, has 20% of the shares, the same amount just acquired by Wanda. 5% is owned by the rest of the Gil family, whilst the remaining 3% sits with minority shareholders.
The agreement is not just about injecting capital into to Atlético – there will also be some rojiblanco football academies set up in China, and a summer friendly tour of China for the players.
The day-to-day running of the club will remain the same – although now a member of the Wanda Group will sit on the Atleti board representing Wang Jianlin.
What do you think of this news? Do you think this is good or bad for Atlético?