Who are the 10 richest football club owners in the world

François Pinault, Dietrich Mateschitz and Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan are some of those who stand out on the list

Years ago, several of the most important clubs in Europe have ceased to belong to their members and have owners who decide their fate. This has caused some teams without much renown to become great powers and others, whose history was already glorious, have an even greater economic difference with the rest.

This week, the magazine Forbes updated its list with the 10 richest soccer team owners in Europe.

1- François Pinault, Stade Rennes (France): USD 48.8 billion

François-Henri Pinault, director of French luxury goods group PPR, in a file photo.  EFE / Ian Langsdon
François-Henri Pinault, director of French luxury goods group PPR, in a file photo. EFE / Ian Langsdon

Much of his fortune is due to the empire he inherited from his father, who was a British-born peasant of modest origins. In 1960, he founded the company Kering, which originally specialized in the sale of wood and other building materials. This creation allowed it to acquire the assets of the chain of stores in 1992 Printemps and a year later, he also became owner of the wine cellar Chateau Latour. However, it was until 1999 when the businessman made his fortune grow, since in that year he managed to buy most of the shares of the company. Gucci luxury signature, to which other brands of retail in later years.

Currently the conglomerate Kering also owns the sportswear brand Cougar, as well as the French magazine Le Point, a theater located in Paris, several vineyards and a yacht company. It was in 2005 when François-Henri Pinault he became the president of this group of luxury brands belonging to the fashion industry. In addition, he is also the boss of Group Artemis, a company that controls all of his family’s assets.

His empire includes Ligue 1’s Stade Rennais which he acquired in 1998 and has since only won the Coupe de France in 2019.

2- Dietrich Mateschitz, RB Leipzig (Germany): USD 25.3 billion

Dietrich Mateschitz (Reuters)
Dietrich Mateschitz (Reuters)

The 77-year-old Austrian not only owns the German club that plays in the Bundesliga, but is also one of its founders, having created it in 2009 after buying the license of the SSV Markranstädt team. The acronym RB stands for Red Bull, a company he co-founded in 1987 and of which he still owns 49%.

The other teams that are part of his field are Red Bull Salzburg of Austria and the New York Red Bulls of MLS. It also has a Formula 1 team and sponsors the best athletes of extreme sportsmen on the planet, in addition to organizing the main events of this nature.

3- Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Manchester City (England): USD 23.3 billion

Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan (Getty)
Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan (Getty)

Sheik Mansour, as he is popularly known, is from the family that governs Abu Dhabi, one of the United Arab Emirates (UAE). After having held some political positions related to consulting and education, he took the reins of the International Petroleum Investment Company (a sovereign energy investment fund that belongs to the UAE government).

Finally, in 2008 he bought Manchester City and made it a European powerhouse. Although they have not yet won the Champions League, the club has one of the best squads in the world and always fights in the Premier League of their country. In addition, he owns other teams: Melbourne City (Australia), New York City (United States) and Montevideo City Torque (Uruguay), among others.

4- Andrea Agnelli, Juventus (Italy): USD 20,126 million

Andrea Agnelli (Reuters)
Andrea Agnelli (Reuters)

The Italian is part of one of the richest and most powerful dynasties in his country that was started by Giovanni Agnelli, one of the founders of Fiat. Currently, at 45, Andrea is the leader of his family and since 2010 is the head of Juventus, the most winning club in his nation.

He was appointed to the Turin club when the entity was still shaken by the scandal of the Calciopoli, which caused the historic team to be relegated to the second division in 2006. Since then it has dedicated itself to revolutionizing the structures and philosophy of the Vecchia Signora, diversifying activities (hotel, museum), developing the sponsorship policy, redesigning the logo to make it more “universal” with a simple “J”.

In addition, with him, renowned reinforcements such as Carlos Tevez, Cristiano Ronaldo and Andrea Pirlo, among others, have arrived at the club, which have allowed the institution to win six Scudettos followed, but since his arrival he still could not be crowned king of Europe with the Champions League.

5- Roman Abramovich, Chelsea (England): $ 14.8 billion

Russian magnate Roman Abramovich
Russian magnate Roman Abramovich

Many will be surprised to learn that the Russian billionaire built his fortune from the ground up. Because after the death of his parents in his childhood, he started selling auto parts and tires so he could eat. His first venture was a toy factory with the money he had accumulated and the great leap came in the 90s, when he turned to the oil industry.

Together with Boris Berezovski, another Russian tycoon, he acquired a majority stake in the firm Sibneft, taking advantage of a controversial program that offered loans in exchange for shares. Before long, the company grew at a fast pace and the profits were extraordinary. He currently owns Millhouse Capital, a holding company that has stakes in companies such as the Evraz steelmaker and the Norilsk Nickel miner.

Abramovich, who has a close relationship with the president of Russia, Vladimir Putin, has been the president of Chelsea since 2003 and his arrival was a revolution for the Premier League. Since their arrival, the London team has won 21 trophies, including two Champions League. From its founding until its acquisition, the club had only won 14 titles.

6- Stanley Kroenke, Arsenal (England): $ 10.7 billion

(Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

The 74-year-old American is an expert in sports and real estate businesses. He is married to billionaire Ann Walton, heir to the Walmart supermarket chain. His most notable investments include being the majority partner of the NFL’s Los Angeles Rams, the NBA’s Denver Nuggets, and the NHL’s Colorado Avalanche. Since 2011, he has controlled Arsenal in the Premier League, which has failed to turn him into a European power.

7- Nasser Al-Khelaifi, PSG (France): USD 7.9 billion

The president of Paris Saint-Germain, Nasser Al-Khelaifi (EFE)
The president of Paris Saint-Germain, Nasser Al-Khelaifi (EFE)

The Qatari sovereign wealth fund Qatar Sports Investments (QSI) bought the French club in 2011 and appointed this former tennis player who does not come from royalty, but has great knowledge in the corporate sports world: he is president of the Tennis Federation, Squash and Badminton from his country and vice president of the Asian Tennis Federation. In addition, he is a member of the organizing committee for the Qatar Soccer World Cup 2022.

With final earnings of just 16,000 euros in the world of tennis, Nasser al Khelaïfi became the current successful businessman thanks to his ties to power. Mainly because of his friendship with the Crown Prince of Qatar, Tamim bin Hamad al Thani, with whom he shares the passion for tennis. They were partners in the Davis Cup in their country, where the bond was strengthened, although they already knew each other since childhood.

In 2005 he was allowed to join the Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) company, founded to manage the millionaire profits that the oil and natural gas industry brought to the Government. Together with QIA, he founded Qatar Sports Investments, a company whose objective is to invest in sports projects both inside and outside the country, for the development and growth of the local sports area.

Since its landing, PSG has become a powerhouse and among the most resonant signings are the cases of David Beckham, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Neymar, Kylian Mbappé, Sergio Ramos and the last one, Lionel Messi.

8- Rocco Commisso, Fiorentina (Italy): USD 7.5 billion

Rocco B. Commisso (Reuters)
Rocco B. Commisso (Reuters)

The 71-year-old Italian-American made his fortune by creating Mediacom in 1995. Since that idea that was born in a basement, the company has become one of the leading cable operators in the United States. For this reason, he is considered a pioneer in cable television and is on the board of directors of the National Cable and Telecommunications Association.

With the millions in the bank, he decided to try his luck in sports and in 2017 bought the New York Cosmos team. Two years later he acquired Fiorentina, from Serie A. Although, unlike the other members of the list, he does not seem interested in their teams becoming great powers.

9- Zhang Jindong, Inter Milan (Italy): USD 7.4 billion

Zhang Jindong (Getty Images)
Zhang Jindong (Getty Images)

The 54-year-old Chinese businessman owns the Suning e-commerce group, which has more than 1,600 stores in his country and in Japan. He started his empire as a retail appliance seller in Jiangsu Province and today is a strong representative of real estate, financial services, entertainment and sports.

At the end of 2014, he signed a sponsorship agreement with Barcelona and another with Liverpool, although his great blow came in 2016, when he announced the purchase of approximately 70% of Inter Milan for USD 282 million, becoming the largest investment up to that date by a Chinese company in the acquisition of a European club.

10- Dmitry Rybolovlev, Monaco (Monaco): $ 6.7 billion

  Dmitry Rybolovlev (Getty Images)
Dmitry Rybolovlev (Getty Images)

The businessman was born in Perm, Russia, 54 years ago and invests his money in soccer, real estate and land. Its enormous economic growth was due to the development of Uralkali, a fertilizer company created in 1930 that today is one of the largest in the nation. Among its heritage is Skorpios Island, which was owned by Aristotle Onassis. He also bought mansions from Donald Trump, and Will Smith.

His link with the sport is tied to Monaco, a club of which he bought 66% from Prince Albert in 2011. After loitering in the promotion, he managed to get the team ascended to Ligue 1 and with signings such as those of Radamel Falcao, James Rodríguez and João Moutinho, managed to turn it into a respectable team in Europe.

Among his most curious data, it stands out that he spent 11 months in prison, accused of being the intellectual author of the murder of a shareholder of his company, who refused to privatize part of his shares.

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Who are the 10 richest football club owners in the world