Glazers Rushing to IPO Manchester United?

Manchester United is close to completing an IPO of shares in the club.  The Glazer family hopes to raise $1bn by selling anywhere between 25-40% of the club to investors in Singapore and the rest of Asia.  A successful sale at those percentages would value the Red Devils somewhere between 2.5 and 4 billion dollars.

The main details of the deal have been excellently covered in several places (Guardian and Bloomberg to start) so I won’t reinvent the wheel.  I would like to note that the Glazers are attempting to sell shares into equity markets at their most volatile in a year and with many hanging near their 52-week lows.  Asian markets (particularly Singapore)  have been hit harder by the rout compared to European and American markets; the Kospi, Nikkei and Singapore Index have all dropped double digits since the beginning of August.  The owners are betting that rabid Asian Manchester United fans can overcome a market environment where few want to take any risk.

1-year chart of S&P500, FTSE, NIKKEI, KOSPI, EWS
1-year chart of the VIX

Pushing ahead with the sale suggests there is a slight urgency to the financing, whether that urgency is driven by financial pressures on the club or on the Glazers is yet to be seen.

Glazers Rushing to IPO Manchester United?