Olympique Lyonnais is at a turning point. On March 9, we learned that two main shareholders of the club, namely Pathé and IDG Capital (19.36% and 19.85% of shares), were seeking to sell their shares. For this, they had mandated the investment bank Raine as they had explained in a press release.
Two partners want to let go of OL
“Pathé and IDG Capital have received expressions of interest from investors and will favor parties wishing to collaborate with the current management in order to continue to develop the club’s vision and build on the legacy of Olympique. Lyonnais“. Quickly, OL Groupe had reassured about its financial situation.
A few weeks later, the plan to buy back the shares of the two shareholders is moving forward. Yesterday, the newspaper specializing in the economy, Bloombergrevealed that the club chaired by Jean-Michel Aulas would have been the subject of numerous offers. Six, to be more precise. These would come from European and American investors. After the commotion caused by this news, OL Groupe decided to respond this Friday morning by means of a press release.
Les Gones react
“Following the information published today in the media, OL Groupe recalls that Pathé and IDG Capital informed the market by a press release dated March 8, 2022 of the fact that they had decided to engage the Raine bank in to assess their strategic options regarding their respective stakes in OL Groupe, and that they had received expressions of interest from investors”, can we read.
“In this context, as indicated in OL Groupe’s press release of March 9, 2022, the company confirms that it is continuing to implement its development projects within the framework of the guidelines defined by the Board of Directors in aiming to align, as far as possible, the project to strengthen its financial structure announced on February 15, 2022, with the aspirations of Pathé and IDG Capital. These works and operations of OL Groupe, carried out under the direction of Jean-Michel Aulas, are part of a logic of continuity and permanence of the Management..
The project to buy back shares is progressing but…
OL then added: “OL Groupe confirms that it is aware of the fact that investors have expressed their interest in view of an operation allowing the withdrawal of Pathé and IDG Capital from its funding round. Some of them have also expressed their interest in participating in strengthening the company’s financial structure. OL Groupe’s General Management is mobilized to enable this process to be completed under the best possible conditions for the company and all of its shareholders, including its minority shareholders. However, as highlighted in today’s Bloomberg dispatch, taken up in particular by the Boursier.com website, there is no certainty that the work in progress will lead to an operation..
Finally, the club concluded: “as a reminder, the share capital of OL Groupe is currently made up of 58,898,591 shares and, on August 1, 2013, bonds of the Osranes type (bonds redeemable in new or existing shares) were issued, the number of which currently in circulation is 996,264 potentially giving rise to its maturity of July 1, 2023 in the creation of 90,992,776 shares”. While the process of buying back the shares of Pathé and IDG capital is accelerating, it should be remembered that Jean-Michel Aulas intends to keep 28% in the company. OL will soon enter a new era.