Sport Republic and its lead investor Dragan Solak, the Founder and Chairman of the Advisory Board, United Group, confirmed on Tuesday the acquisition of a controlling stake in Premier League’s Southampton Football Club Limited.
The press release quoted Solak as saying that Southampton would be a cornerstone of the organisation that he and his partners plan to build.
A new era at #SaintsFC 😇
We can confirm that Sport Republic has completed the acquisition of a controlling stake in Southampton Football Club.
— Southampton FC (@SouthamptonFC) January 4, 2022
“My partners and I have experience in long-term investments in the sports and entertainment industry and Sport Republic has been founded to combine this expertise and deliver something unique to the market. Southampton has so many of the qualities we have been looking for in a major sports organisation. It has a great management team, excellent talent development, talented teams playing attractive football and a dedicated fan base. We are delighted to be able to complete this acquisition as the first step towards the execution of our investment strategy. Southampton will be a cornerstone of the organisation we plan to build,” he said.
Sport Republic Chairman Henrik Kraft said that “we will be an active and engaged owner, but we will not be starting any revolutions”. “We were attracted to Southampton because it is already a well-run club that follows a clearly defined strategy,” he added.
The press release said that Southampton’s CEO Martin Semmens will continue to run the day-to-day operations of the club, and Sport Republic will be working closely with him and his team to help the club grow. It recalled that Southampton is Sport Republic’s first acquisition and added that it expects more investments in coming years.
“Our ambition is to build a portfolio of high influence stakes in football clubs and other sporting assets across the world. At the same time we will also invest in early stage sports technology companies and use our portfolio to accelerate the development of these companies. The acquisition of Southampton is a great first step and we are very excited about the journey ahead,” it said.
According to Southampton FC CEO Martin Semmens, the club has spent the past two years searching for the right partner to take the club forward. “Today we have found the perfect solution. Sport Republic are experienced investors but also experienced within the world of elite professional sports. That combination is very hard to find, and we are thrilled to have reached an agreement that secures our short and long-term future.
“Sport Republic is being built to provide a network of people, clubs, and technology that allows the clubs within it to grow every day and gain the advantages you need to be successful. As a club we have never wanted to buy success, but to earn it. Sport Republic gives us the power to improve our operations at every level, helping us to reach for the success our staff work so hard for, and our fans crave,” he said and added that “everyone at Southampton welcomes Dragan, Henrik, Rasmus and the people within Sport Republic to our great club. “We searched the world for good people with the ambition and resources to lead us into the next era and I am happy to confirm we have found them. We can’t wait to get started and be part of the future of Sport Republic,” he added.