Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) are in talks with Suning over becoming minority shareholders at Inter, according to a leading British journalist.
Reports in Italy this morning suggested PIF had overtaken BC Partners in the race to become the Nerazzurri’s new owners.
However, sports writer Ben Jacobs – who has been covering the Saudis’ attempt to buy Newcastle United in the Premier League – explained in a thread on Twitter that they are not interested in a full takeover.
PIF are prepared to purchase a stake of no more than 30% at Inter, which Suning reportedly value at €300 million.
Nothing has been agreed between the parties but Jacobs said this offer could be attractive to Suning, because it would enable them to remain Inter’s owners.
PIF could potentially team up with Fortress in a ‘halfway approach’, however, an arrangement Fortress previously considered with Abu Dhabi sovereign fund Mubadala.
Yasir Al-Rumayyan, who manages PIF’s approximately 200 assets including Boeing, Facebook and Disney, is leading negotiations on behalf of the fund.
Jacobs said there were ‘conflicting reports’ as to whether BC Partners remained the frontrunners to buy Inter or whether negotiations with Suning had collapsed.
Suning would still prefer to find a way not to sell Inter, hence PIF’s appeal, but talks are still at an early stage.
The @Gazzetta_it story is correct. PIF have explored a minority stake in #InterMilan. Told Yasir Al Rumayyan involved in talks. Up to 30% investment discussed which, based on Suning’s highest valuation would be €300m (260m). Nothing agreed but may give Suning an out not to sell.
— Ben Jacobs (@JacobsBen) March 3, 2021