Friday, 16 September 2016

Chinese Investment Group Completes West Brom Acquisition

A Chinese investment group Yuni Guokai (Shanghai) Sports has completed its takeover of English Premier League football club West Bromwich Albion, the club announced on Thursday.

Yuni Guokai, which is owned by entrepreneur Guochuan Lai, has now completed its acquisition of West Bromwich Albion Holdings Limited, which had owned approximately 88 per cent of the club’s parent entity.

It said that Jeremy Peace has agreed the sale of West Bromwich Albion Holdings Limited, which owns approximately 88% of the club's parent entity to Yunyi Guokai (Shanghai) Sports Development Limited, a company controlled by Lai Guochuan.

The agreement makes West Brom the first Premier League club to be controlled by an owner from mainland China.
John Williams, the former chairman of second-tier Championship club Blackburn Rovers, has replaced Jeremy Peace as chairman of West Brom following the completion of the takeover. Peace, who agreed the sale, will now leave the club after 15 years as chairman.

Lai said: “I’m delighted to complete the acquisition and to become the next steward of the club. I would like to thank Jeremy Peace for his leadership over the last 15 years and for laying the strong foundations for the next stage of the club’s development. I am excited to have the opportunity to support the club’s chairman, John Williams, and the team in building the club over the years ahead.”

The statement said that Williams, the former Blackburn Rovers chairman, will take over as chairman of the club with immediate effect and Peace has agreed to stay on in an advisory capacity to assist with the transition to new ownership during the 2016/17 season but steps down from his board positions in relation to the club.

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