Manchester United owners looking at potential sale of club
UK football club Manchester United said it was exploring "strategic alternatives", including a potential sale by its US owners the Glazer family.
In a statement released on Tuesday, the English Premier League club said it was starting the process to explore new investment or sale,17 years after being bought by the Glazers.
Options include a partial sale of the club or investments including stadium and infrastructure redevelopment.
"As we seek to continue building on the club’s history of success, the board has authorized a thorough evaluation of strategic alternatives," Avram Glazer and Joel Glazer, executive co-chairmen and directors of United, said.
"We will evaluate all options to ensure that we best serve our fans and that Manchester United maximizes the significant growth opportunities available to the club today and in the future."
British billionaire Jim Ratcliffe expressed interest in buying United in August.
The Glazers are unpopular with many United supporters, having leveraged their purchase of the famous club with debt, believed to still stand at £500m. The Glazers bought the club for £790m in 2005.
Manchester United shares jumped as much as 20% after Sky News first reported on the sale process, giving the club a market capitalisation of $2.6bn.
The news came as the club said that star striker Cristiano Ronaldo would leave with immediate effect, in an acrimonious end to the Portugal captain's second spell at Old Trafford.
Reporting by Frank Prenesti for Sharecast.com