Dalian Wanda have been shareholders of Atlético Madrid for nearly two years now, and according to sources at OKDiario, the Chinese corporation have aspirations to own 100% of the rojiblancos.
Wanda Group CEO Wang Jianlin, the richest man in China, currently owns 20% of the club after buying in in January 2015. However, this appears to not be enough and he has expressed desire to obtain 100% over the next five years.
Wang has already renamed the club’s training ground under his company’s name. Furthermore, a football academy has been opened in his native China using the Atlético branding.
Atlético currently has a medley of owners. 52% is owned by Miguel Ángel Gil, son of the infamous Jesús Gil. The Gil family then also own a further 3%.
Enrique Cerezo, currently Atlético’s president holds a further 20%, with the remaining shares owned by a variety of minor shareholders.
The Wang family, with its enormous wealth, also comes with some scandals. Dorothy Wang, Jianlin’s daughter, featured on an American TV reality show flaunting her wealth on Instagram.
Meanwhile, Jianlin himself has become a fervent anti-Disney orator, criticising the company in a number of interviews.
Lastly, there have also been rumours that the group has been in talks with Silvio Berlusconi over the acquisition of AC Milan. Who knows, maybe Jianlin was impressed by the San Siro stadium in May?
Although the rumour of Dalian Wanda’s desire for total control of Atlético may be pure hearsay, it may be worth noting that the company is powerful, ambitious and not afraid of setting their own course.
How do these rumours make you feel? Would you welcome further investment from the group?