LEEDS, England (NWN) – The San Francisco 49ers have increased their minority ownership stake in Premier League club Leeds to 44%, the English football team said on Friday.
The NFL franchise first bought 15% of the team from Andrea Radrizani in 2018 and increased it to 37%. In January, during Leeds’ first season in the Premier League after a 16-year absence.
Acer Ventures chairman and founder Radrizani owns 56% of Leeds.
“We are pleased to see that Acer Ventures has strengthened its partnership with 49ers Enterprises, who have clearly been impressed by the quality of the project,” Leeds Chief Executive Angus Kinnear said in a statement.
In January, Parag Marathe, president of 49ers Enterprises, became the vice-president of the Northern English club.
“Bearing Ventures and President Andrea Radrizani are clearly committed to the club,” said Kinnear, “while everyone involved with the 49ers is actively working with our management team on a daily basis to help us grow.” May, put us in a strong position to achieve our goals in the years to come.”
After finishing ninth last season, Leeds are just above the relegation zone with two wins from 10 games. Leicester visits land Road on Sundays.
Friday’s announcement comes as the NFL is looking to broaden its international market. The league is currently evaluating offers from teams bidding for specific marketing rights in specific international regions.
Chris Halpin, the NFL’s chief strategy and development officer, told the Associated Press in October that they are evaluating offers for overseas rights from “more than half” of the league’s teams. An announcement is planned in December giving teams five-year licenses to take effect in 2022.
NFL teams with links to overseas territories may be willing to play more home games there, as the Jacksonville Jaguars have done in London.
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