Manchester United’s share price has fallen by a record amount in a single day after shares plummeted from $23.70 (£18.86) a share on Friday, September 1st to $19.35 (£15.41) at close on Tuesday, September 5th. The news will surely be a devastating blow to the Glazer family, who had been in talks to sell the club earlier this year.
Glazers Takeover Decision Causes Devastating Market Reaction
Manchester United Value Plummets by Over £550 Million in a Single Day
United’s value on the New York Stock Exchange has fallen by 18.22% after the market reacted to reports that the Glazer family are reluctant to sell their majority ownership of the club. The American family are understood to control 69% of the Premier League side and had been in talks to sell their portion this summer.
However, reports from some newspapers have suggested that they intend to take their portion of the club off the market until 2025 when they allegedly believe that they will be able to receive between £7 billion and £10 billion in a sale.
Regardless, it appears that the stock traders have lost confidence in a potential takeover and have decided to exit their positions and sell the stock. Journalist Ben Jacobs has described it as “the worst day in 11 years” of United being listed as a public company after over £550 million of its market value was wiped within 24 hours.
The Glazers faced heavy criticism when they bought majority ownership of the club in June 2005, as the deal was largely financed by borrowing secured against Manchester United’s assets. The debt incurred by the purchase still stands at £500 million today and has cost the Red Devils over £1 billion to service, despite the fact the owners continue to receive dividends from the club.
Manchester United Sale Talks Appear to Have Stalled
In November 2022, the owners instructed banks to manage the sale of United to a new owner. Earlier this year, Qatari Sheikh Jassim and Sir Jim Ratcliffe, founder of INEOS Chemical Group, entered several bids in competition to purchase the club.
While the value of each bid was not publicly released, it is understood that the Glazers received bids that offered a premium on what was then a much higher stock price, although Sky Sports have reported that they failed to meet the set price of £6 billion.
Glazers’ Future at Manchester United Uncertain
It is unclear whether the latest reaction to reports will spark a reaction from the ownership, or whether they will continue with business as usual. The stock price of the club is still valued significantly higher than the $13 (£10.35) it averaged before the club was officially listed for sale in November 2022, although it remains to be seen whether the price will tumble further.
For now, it is unclear how likely it is that new owners will arrive at the club in the near future. However, the market clearly feels that the uncertainty and reports that the club could be taken off the market.