RedBird moves into cricket with stake in IPL's Royals
RedBird Capital Partners, the US private investment firm, has bought a stake worth 15 per cent in the Rajasthan Royals, of cricket's Indian Premier League.
RedBird, based in New York, is acquiring the stake as part a wider deal that values the team at $250m, and which will also see Emerging Media, the company run by Royals’ owner Manoj Badale, increase its stake in the franchise, from 51 to 65 per cent.
The investment firm, which was founded by Gerry Cardinale, a former executive at Goldman Sachs, is to “provide strategic capital and experienced counsel to support the Royals’ long-term growth… and commercial objectives".
Other Royals shareholders include Fox Corporation head Lachlan Murdoch.
Cardinale, founder and managing partner of RedBird, said, “The IPL is a dynamic league with a global audience and a forward thinking mindset. The Royals have contributed to this progressive approach and we look forward to further supporting its on-field sporting performance and business operations.”
Ranjit Barthakur, the Royals’ chairman, added “We are tremendously proud to announce this extra investment from our long-standing investor, Manoj Badale, and to establish a ground-breaking collaboration with our new partner RedBird
In March, RedBird bought a stake of around 10 per cent in US-based Fenway Sports Group, the owner of Major League Baseball’s Boston Red Sox and English soccer giants Liverpool.
That deal is worth $750 million, according to individuals cited.
RedBird acquisitions have already included French soccer club Toulouse and the XFL, the American football league scheduled to relaunch, for the second time, in 2022.
In February, RedBird agreed a deal to acquire a significant minority stake, said to amount to between 30 and 40 per cent, in Wasserman, the US sports marketing and talent management agency.