John Textor is inching closer to a takeover of French football team Olympique Lyonnais in what will be his biggest acquisition in the sport.
Lyon said in a statement that there was “sufficient probability” a deal would close quickly after U.S. investor Textor and his Eagle Football Holdings LLC vehicle secured necessary approvals to proceed.
Textor agreed to acquire Lyon in June, only to be beset by delays linked to financing the deal, which values the Ligue 1 club at about €800 million ($842 million). Things were further complicated by Textor’s co-ownership of English Premier League team Crystal Palace FC.
A proponent of the so-called multiclub model, Textor has spent quickly in his quest to build a global football stable. The digital entrepreneur also owns stakes in Brazilian club Botafogo and Belgium’s RWD Molenbeek.
For the Lyon deal, Textor secured financial backing from investors including Jean-Pierre Conte, chairman of private equity firm Genstar Capital, who agreed to take equity stakes in Eagle Football. This changed the ownership make up of Eagle Football, something that drew the attention of the Premier League and Crystal Palace’s co-owners and threatened to scupper the deal.
“We are now confident to have the agreement in principle of all parties to proceed,” Textor said.
Lyon said it would continue to monitor the situation closely and issue a date for completion in due course.