Spotify founder and CEO Daniel Ek is very much keen on buying Arsenal, despite current ownership vowing it does not want to sell the English football club.
Daniel Ek, the Swedish billionaire who is the founder and chief executive of popular audio subscription streaming service Spotify, said he remains committed to buying Premier League club Arsenal FC, despite consistent refusals to sell from current owner Kroenke Sports & Entertainment.
Speaking on United States-based financial news channel CNBC, Ek said he is undeterred in his effort to acquire the club.
“I”m very serious. I have secured the funds for it, and I want to bring what I think is a very compelling offer to the owners, and I hope they hear me out,” Ek said.
Ek last week first tweeted out his intent to buy Arsenal, an effort involving several former star payers such as Thierry Henry, follows the club’s involvement in the now-suspended effort to create the European Super League. That highly controversial effort has since prompted widespread protests among Arsenal supporters, and the club itself acknowledged “we made it mistake…we didn’t make the right decision here, which we fully accept.”
But KSE – led by Stan Kroenke and also the owner of several other pro teams including the National Football League’s Los Angeles Rams, National Basketball Association’s Denver Nuggets, and National Hockey League’s Colorado Avalanche, among other franchises – says it is not entertaining any offers for the Arsenal, despite that growing unrest.
“In recent days, we have noted speculation regarding a potential takeover bid for Arsenal Football Club,” KSE said. “We remain 100 per cent committed to Arsenal and are not selling any stake in the club. We have not received any offer and we will not entertain any offer.
“Our ambition for Arsenal remains to compete to win the biggest trophies in the game and our focus remains on improving our competitiveness on the pitch to achieve this,” KSE said.
KSE, which gained a controlling stake in Arsenal in 2011, has previously faced calls to sell the club, particularly from former minority shareholder and Russian billionaire Alisher Usmanov, who is also president of the International Fencing Federation. But KSE ultimately prevailed in that battle and bought out Usmanov’s take in the club in 2018.
This time, Ek acknowledged the road to buy Arsenal, even if it becomes possible, will be an extended one.
“I certainly didn’t expect that this would happen overnight,” he said. “I’m prepared that this could be a long journey. All I can do is prepare what I think is a very thoughtful offer and bring it to them and hope they hear me out. I want to the club to do better. That’s my primary interest.”
Ek, 38, has been an Arsenal supporter for three decades.
“Arsenal is my team. I love the history. I love the players, and of course, I love the fans,” he said. “So I just see a tremendous opportunity to set a real vision for the club, to bring it back to its glory.”
Arsenal last season sank to eighth place in the Premier League, the club’s lowest finish since 1995, and now sits in 10th place in the current campaign.