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DFL top courts trust for planned investor



DFL top courts trust for planned investor

Top officials of the German Football League (DFL) have asked for trust in the realization of the desired business model with an investor. “I’ve not been fighting for 20 years to get 50+1 so that I let a Trojan horse into the Bundesliga through the back door, which thwarts everything I’ve stood for so far,” assured DFL supervisory board chairman Hans-Joachim Watzke on Monday evening at a panel discussion in Dortmund. “That’s completely out of the question.”

The round of talks was organized by the “Südtribüne Dortmund” fan association and the board of directors of Borussia Dortmund’s fan department. The DFL wants to sell 12.5 percent of the shares in a subsidiary that has yet to be founded, to which the media rights will be outsourced, to an investor over 20 years. This should bring in two billion euros. “A little trust is also good in this situation,” said Watzke.

DFL Managing Director Axel Hellmann also campaigned for the cash injection. “I always compare it to the roof of a house where it somehow rains,” he emphasized. “We have a good structure that has worked for years (…) and we’re playing a decent role.” But some things are “not to be worked on on the side of the foundation, but it trickles a bit into the roof and there are holes.” It should be noted: “Internationally, some are ahead of us, so we have to do something.”

It is expressly not about “running after modern, commercialized football and attacking the Premier League”. The focus is on contemporary marketing and competitiveness. There will definitely be no fanning out or further unraveling of the match days. Many fans are critical of the planned entry of an investor, which they recently documented on numerous banners in the stadiums and also presented during the discussion.

300 million euros of the proceeds from the cooperation with a partner are to go to the 36 first and second division clubs for free use. The DFL is to receive 750 million euros to set up its own streaming platform. The rest of the income is earmarked for the clubs to invest in infrastructure.

Club representatives will decide whether to go ahead with the project at a meeting on May 24th. This requires a two-thirds majority among the professional clubs. At another meeting in early or mid-July, the selected investor should be given the go-ahead.