Serie A has chosen a group led by private equity giant CVC Capital Partners to invest in its media rights, a deal that could provide more than $1 billion of up-front cash to the Italian soccer league, according to Reuters.
The CVC group, which includes Advent International and Italy’s state-backed Fondo Strategico Italiano, will now enter an exclusive period to hammer out the details. The group reportedly offered to pay up to $1.9 billion (1.6 billion Euros) for 10% of a new media company to manage Serie A’s media rights, according to the report.
The group beat out bids from other prominent investment firms, including Bain Capital and Fortress. The group needed 14 of the 20 clubs to vote in its favor and received 15, according to Reuters, with the other five clubs abstaining.
Representatives from CVC and Serie A didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment. Spokeswomen for FSI and Advent declined to comment.
If reached, a deal could reshape Italy’s top-tier soccer league, which includes teams like Juventus, Inter Milan and AS Roma. The new media company, which would likely control Serie A’s rights for a set amount of time, allows the league to bring in outside investment that could both supply it with upfront capital and help it maximize the value of those rights, which are sold to media companies around the world.
CVC, which has over $100 billion of assets under management, has a history in sports. The group held a significant stake in racing circuit F1 for a decade and sold it in 2016 for a massive profit. Last year it purchased a minority stake in England’s top rugby league.