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Explained: Why is Deadpool actor Ryan Reynolds investing in Wrexham AFC?

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Written by Shashank Nair, edited by Explained Desk | New Delhi |

February 20, 2021 12:53:53 pm

The third oldest professional football club in the world, playing in the oldest international football ground in the world, currently playing in the lowest league of English professional football, was bought by actors Ryan Reynolds, of renown Deadpool, and Rob McElhenney.

Wrexham AFC, which is part of the National League, received a $ 2 million investment from the acting duo. Promises made to supporters eventually include the modernization of the racetrack ground and the guarantee that the club will not be renamed, moved or renamed. They also promised to “WIN, WIN, WIN!” and “always beat Chester”. The new owners have already decided to pay the salaries players and staff lost when the club was on leave after Covid-19 hit the lower leagues of English football hard.

Why Wrexham AFC?

An old and reputable name in English football, but not so good in terms of money, and now in the lowest division of professional football (Premier League level of the National League) in England – Wrexham FC has the potential to be a small investment that can pay big dividends. There’s also a documentary that’s being made behind the scenes that has the potential to be a money-spinner given the star power that just came aboard.

While the money or the upcoming changes won’t be at the level of a city football group buying Manchester City, the past history of Ryan Reynold’s investments gives a clearer picture of what the future of Wrexham.

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Why Ryan Reynolds?

Reynolds is what Nasdaq calls a “super-investor”. It continues to own or has held stakes in brands such as Aviation Gin and discount prepaid service provider Mint Mobile. These are brands that weren’t very well known or had big sales. But by using his brand value, Reynolds actually increased the value of those brands.

Take the example of Aviation Gin. After the Deadpool actor, who was given $ 2 million to star in the first film, bought a stake in the gin company, the following year saw them grow more than 100% in sales. Earlier this year, Reynolds sold his stake in Aviation Gin to Diageo for $ 610 million, with $ 335 million prepaid and up to $ 275 million more over the next 10 years, Diageo said. be complements, according to CNBC.

What is the end goal of an investment like Wrexham?

There is a third lesser-known investor along with Reynolds and McElhenney. Writer and comedian Humphrey Ker, spoke with BBC about the end of the game with a forgotten club like Wrexham.

“If I was very confident I would say our expectation is to get into Ligue 1 and thrive, and if we get to the top of our projected trajectory then the championship is not unreasonable,” Ker told BBC. He added that if they achieved these goals, the next step would be to sell the club to investors “willing to throw $ 200 million down the toilet.”

Why did the Americans start investing in European football?

From the start to the mid-2010s, Chinese companies received the green light from their government to invest in European football. The attempt was to secure soft power and brand recognition by investing in football abroad. But, from 2020, a mixture of economic recession from Covid-19 and an erosion of trust between Western economies and China has seen many of these companies leave Europe. The void left by these Chinese companies has now been filled by American investors.

How has the excessive cost of owning American sports teams caused investors to seek different avenues?

This is based on the investment potential of European football clubs as well as the lack of investment opportunities in US sports franchises. With multibillion dollar valuations, making it to the board of directors of an NBA or NFL team can burn a hole in your pocket and the return on your investment isn’t too high.

“In Europe you have thousands of clubs, with a much lower entry point, and you can also make money from player trading, which appeals to US sports investors because they all use data. for recruiting them for years and think they can do it better than Europeans, ”said Oliver Finlay, Managing Director of Beautiful Game Group, a Delaware-based private equity firm, while addressing Atlantic.

The best example is Liverpool. After being originally bought out by Fenway for around $ 280million, the club had their fair share of stumbles before eventually landing Juergen Klopp, who built a squad and won enough to push Liverpool’s valuation to over $ 2 billion, according to Forbes.



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