Football: Milan say majority share not for sale following reports of takeover bid

File photo of former remisier king Mr Peter Lim. -- PHOTO: SPH
File photo of former remisier king Mr Peter Lim. -- PHOTO: SPH

MILAN (AFP) - AC Milan vice-president Barbara Berlusconi insisted Monday the Serie A giants were not for sale, following reports from Spain that Asian tycoon Peter Lim had tabled a takeover bid.

Berlusconi, the daughter of club owner and president Silvio, said recently that 20-30 per cent of Milan's shares were up for grabs in order to boost the club's plans to build a new stadium.

Spanish newspaper AS on Monday claimed Singaporean Lim, who is reported to be in the midst of trying to buy La Liga side Valencia, had offered to buy a 51 per cent stake in Milan for 300m euros (S$519.5 million).

But following unconfirmed reports Lim had met with club vice-president Adriano Galliani, Berlusconi said, speaking from Abu Dhabi where the club is trying to lure new investors, said the report was "baseless".

"In any case, the figures which appeared today are totally out of line with the value of the club. 300 million represents approximately 30 per cent of AC Milan, certainly not 51 per cent," she said. "As I've already said, we're not interested in selling a 51 per cent stake, only a 20-30 per cent share to help us get our stadium project up and running."

Silvio Berlusconi last month brushed off reports he had instructed consultants to find a buyer for the ailing seven-times European champions, who are set to miss next season's Champions League and the consequential financial windfall.

A report by financial news service Bloomberg had claimed Berlusconi had instructed American finance company Lazard to seek out potential buyers.

However the former Italian prime minister, who has seen Milan win five of their seven Champions League titles under an ownership which began in 1986, said he had no intention of selling the club.

"No, no, no," Berlusconi told journalists when asked if he would sell Milan. "I want to reassure all fans of Milan, I have no intention of selling the club."

For the second successive season, and following a mass exodus of key players in the summer of 2012, Milan are struggling on the domestic front.

Clarence Seedorf's side sit 11th, 39 points behind leaders Juventus and 22 points adrift of the first Champions League qualifying place occupied by third-placed Napoli.