It has been announced, on 16 August, 2011, that the leading English FA Premier League Football Club, Manchester United, is to raise US$1 billion in an IPO (Initial Public Offering) on the Singapore Stock Exchange in the fourth quarter of this year. The IPO will be coordinated globally by the major Swiss Bank, Credit Suisse.
ManU is reputedly worth US$1.86 and is the world's wealthiest Football Club. ManU originally was listed on the London Stock Exchange and delisted in 2005, when the US Glazer brothers took over the Club.
Originally, the Club was to have listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, and the listing on the Singapore Exchange is designed to take advantage of the Club's extensive and enthusiastic fan base in the Far East - a football mad region.
Apparently, this move is also designed to expand their lucrative business and, in particular, to raise funds to acquire new players to maintain their leadership as one of the world's most successful Football Clubs, especially to fend off challenges against their prominent status from the likes of long-time rivals, Manchester City, owned by trillionnaire Sheik Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan of Abu Dhabi.
Of course, this development raises once again the vexed question of whether or not football clubs should be run as public companies or be owned by their fans in some kind of mutual organisation. …