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SBD Global/July 29, 2014/Finance

Borussia Dortmund Targets Investors To Boost Salaries, Close Gap On Rival Bayern Munich

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BVB Managing Dir Hans-Joachim Watzke says club seeks two more investors.
Bundesliga side Borussia Dortmund "is seeking new investors to help boost salaries and close the gap on teams including Bayern Munich," according to Tino Andresen of BLOOMBERG. Dortmund Managing Dir Hans-Joachim Watzke said that Germany’s only publicly listed football club, known as BVB, "is targeting an agreement to sell at least a 5 percent stake each to two strategic partners by the end of September," following the sale of a 9% holding to Evonik Industries AG in June. He said, "It doesn’t necessarily have to be a German company or one of our present sponsors." He added that "a strategic partner mustn’t be a 'locust' or a fund" but rather an investor with a "significant long-term sponsoring interest." Close Brothers Seydler Research analyst Marcus Silbe said, "Additional strategic investors make sense." Watzke said that "the club’s rise is helping to increase the Bundesliga’s standing internationally." Watzke: "Every league that booms needs one, two or three beacons that excel at the national level and which have international appeal." He added that "new sponsorship deals similar to the agreement with Evonik, which runs through 2025, would help increase the wage pool" to as much as €120M ($161M) from about €80M ($108M) now, "making players salaries more competitive with Bayern Munich and other European clubs." Watzke said that Germany’s World Cup success "will also help boost the Bundesliga’s fanbase abroad, and increase the league’s strength when renegotiating international television licensing agreements when contracts expire next year" (BLOOMBERG, 7/28).
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