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Manu Said to Get Enough Orders for All Shares of U.S. IPO

A statue depicting former Manchester United soccer club players Bobby Charlton, Denis Law and George Best stands outside the Old Trafford stadium in Manchester. Photographer: Paul Thomas/Bloomberg
A statue depicting former Manchester United soccer club players Bobby Charlton, Denis Law and George Best stands outside the Old Trafford stadium in Manchester. Photographer: Paul Thomas/Bloomberg

Aug. 7 (Bloomberg) -- Manchester United Ltd., the English soccer team with a record 19 national championships, received enough orders for all shares being sold in its U.S. initial public offering, said two people with knowledge of the matter.

The company and its owner, the Glazer family, are seeking to raise as much as $333 million by selling 16.7 million shares at $16 to $20 each, according to a regulatory filing last month. Banks managing the IPO are scheduled to stop taking orders for the shares on Aug. 9 at noon in New York, according to one of the people, who declined to be identified because the talks are private.

United, whose players include England’s striker Wayne Rooney and Welshman Ryan Giggs, picked the U.S. as its listing venue after ditching plans for a share sale of as much as $1 billion in Singapore. It’s pressing ahead with the IPO as the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index rebounds, rising more than 9 percent from its six-month low in June.

Manchester United spokesman Philip Townsend declined to comment.

General Motors Co., the world’s largest carmaker, signed a seven-year deal to have its Chevrolet brand on United’s jerseys starting in 2014, according to a press release last month. GM sponsorship agreement will generate $559 million through 2021, the club said in a filing on Aug. 3.

$4.50 per Fan

United’s sponsorships and product licensing helped generate 89.5 million pounds ($140 million) of revenue in the nine months through March 31, more than one-third of total revenue, filings show. That’s 17 percent more than the year-earlier period.

The club has 659 million followers, United said in its filing, citing a study by Kantar Media. The number of followers is estimated based on the number of respondents in the study who answered, unprompted, that United was either their favorite team or a team they enjoyed following, the filing shows. The IPO values the club at about $4.50 per follower, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

The midpoint of the offering range would value the club at $2.95 billion, or about 50 times profit of 38 million pounds in the 12 months through March 31, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. It’s also about 5 times sales of 345.6 million pounds during the same period.

Twice as Pricey

The range makes United more than twice as pricey as Parken Sport & Entertainment A/S, the operator of F.C. Kobenhaven and its stadium in Copenhagen, which trades at 18 times profit and 0.6 times sales in the 12 months through March, Bloomberg data show. Juventus Football Club SpA , the Turin, Italy-based team, trades at about 0.5 times sales in the 12 months through March 31, the data show.

The Glazer family acquired United for 790 million pounds ($980 million) in 2005, and also own the National Football League’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

The Glazers, who fully own United, hold Class B shares, which are entitled to 10 votes apiece. The Class A shares being sold in the IPO get one vote each, according to filings. The Glazers will maintain almost 99 percent of voting power over the club after the offering, in which a 10 percent stake of the company is being sold.

Jefferies Group Inc., Credit Suisse Group AG and JPMorgan Chase & Co. are leading the U.S. offering for the soccer club, along with Deutsche Bank AG and Bank of America Corp. Morgan Stanley, which had been hired to lead the sale in Singapore, is no longer working on the sale. The club plans to list on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol MANU.

To contact the reporters on this story: Zijing Wu in London at; Fox Hu in Hong Kong at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Jacqueline Simmons at

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