Football: Tottenham get $260 million boost from owners

ENIC Sports Inc., the majority owner of Tottenham, will allocate the funds to help the club invest on and off the pitch. PHOTO: REUTERS

LONDON (Bloomberg) - The owners of Tottenham Hotspur FC will inject £150 million ($257 million) into the English Premier League football club ahead of the new season.

ENIC Sports Inc., the majority owner of Tottenham, will allocate the funds to help the club invest on and off the pitch, according to a statement on Tuesday (May 24).

It comes just days after the north London club finished the EPL season in fourth place to secure qualification for the Champions League, Europe's flagship football tournament.

The money will allow Tottenham's coach, Antonio Conte, to strengthen his squad in the upcoming summer transfer window as he bids to close the gap on domestic rivals Liverpool and Manchester City next season.

The Italian was brought in as Tottenham's manager in November to help turn the club around after a string of poor performances under previous coach Nuno Espirito Santo.

ENIC is the investment firm of businessmen Joe Lewis and Daniel Levy. It bought its controlling stake in the club around the turn of the millennium. Tottenham have just played its first full campaign in front of fans at the 60,000-plus capacity stadium, just before the Covid-19 pandemic forced football games across England behind closed doors.

"The delivery of a world-class home was always a key building block in driving diversified revenues to enable us to invest in the teams and support our ambitions to be consistently competing at the highest levels of European football," Levy, chairman of Tottenham, said in a statement. "Additional capital from ENIC will now enable further investment in the club at an important time."

Under the terms of the capital increase, Tottenham will issue convertible A shares and accompanying warrants. ENIC's shareholding could increase from 85.6 per cent to around 87.5 per cent on conversion to ordinary shares, according to the statement.

Like clubs around Europe, Tottenham, who had borrowed heavily to build the stadium, saw its finances hit by the pandemic. Accounts filed at the UK's Companies House show revenue of £362 million for the year ended June 30, 2021, down more than 20 per cent from the last full year before the pandemic. In mid-2020, the club went to the Bank of England for a loan to help it weather the worst of the crisis. That has since been repaid.

Rothschild & Co. advised Tottenham's independent directors on the capital increase.

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