LONDON: Swansea City have confirmed the club being taken over by United States businessmen Jason Levien and Steve Kaplan.
Financial terms of the deal, which is subject to Premier League approval, were not disclosed, although media reports claim that Levien and Kaplan have acquired a 60 to 70pc controlling interest in the Welsh club for a fee of £100m.
Kaplan currently serves as the vice-chairman of NBA basketball franchise the Memphis Grizzlies. Levien, a former chief executive at the Grizzlies, is now managing general partner at Major League Soccer franchise DC United.
Swansea confirmed in a statement that a number of its existing shareholders would maintain a smaller stake in the club following the takeover. The Swansea City Supporters’ Trust will retain its 21 per cent stake in the club.
Current chairman Huw Jenkins will continue to hold an executive role at Swansea and oversee the day-to-day running of the club. The Supporters’ Trust has held a majority stake in Swansea since heading a rescue operation to save the club from financial crisis in 2002. Any shares acquired in the club at that time are now estimated to be worth 100 times their original value.
Shareholders Jeffrey Crevoiserat, Rob Davies and John van Zweden have completely sold their shares in the club in the wake of the takeover. Crevoiserat shared his 21.1 per cent stake with Brian Katzen, while Davies and van Zweden held 10.5 per cent and 5.3 per cent stakes respectively.
The Premier League is expected to formally approve the takeover in the coming weeks. Swansea finished the 2015-16 season – its fifth consecutive campaign in English football’s top flight – in 12th place.