BARCELONA ( Associated Press) — Barcelona officials have approved plans to sell the club’s television rights and parts of future marketing and licensing revenues to immediately inject 600 million euros ($631 million) into the indebted Spanish team. Can you
Club president Joan Laporta said the measures were necessary “both to generate profit and keep positive equity” after two seasons without a major signing due to crippling debt of 1.3 billion euros (about $1.37 billion).
“As a board we needed it to be able to manage the club and face all the difficulties that came our way, but we also needed it as a club because it would put us in a strong position ”, announced Laporta.
Selected members of the club, called a settlement, voted online Thursday night in favor of supporting the two financial measures presented by Laporta.
The first is the sale of 49% of the company that operates Barcelona to negotiate its licensing and marketing rights. The club expects to receive 200 to 300 million euros ($210–315 million) in return. Laporta said he would only listen to proposals that included a buyback option so that the team could regain full control of those assets at a later date.
The second measure is the sale of up to 25% of the proceeds of Spanish league games for 25 years from television rights, for which the club is expected to earn approximately 450 million euros ($473 million).
Laporta likens his ailing club to a Formula One racing car that needs a complete replacement. He explained that these two economic actions would mean “that F1 cars can leave the pits and return to the front line of the grid to compete and win again.”
When asked by representatives, Laporta and other board members did not reveal any details about the offers or potential buyers.