English Premier League football club Everton has secured a financing agreement for its new stadium.
According to FCBusiness, the deal, agreed with ICBC (London) plc and Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, will provide the Liverpool-based club with a £60m (€68.1m/$77.7m) three-year credit facility.
Everton said the agreement will help it manage working capital requirements and also allow the club to borrow additional funds at a lower cost.
The financial partnership, which has also been approved by the Premier League, represents ICBC London’s first deal with a club in the English top flight.
Sasha Ryazantsev, director at Everton, said: “We are pleased to have entered into a partnership with ICBC, which will increase our financial flexibility, reduce refinancing risk and lower funding costs, while adding to the list of Everton’s ‘firsts’.
“The new relationship with ICBC also represents an important step for us into the Chinese capital market, and we hope to develop further commercial opportunities in China in the future.
“Building on the significant shareholder contribution the club has received over the last year, Everton is now well-funded with sustainable long-term capital.”
Ruixiang Han, general manager of ICBC London added: “This transaction is another important milestone for ICBC in London, highlighting not only our ability to build strong relationships but also underlining the growing credibility of Chinese banks.
“With the London Branch continuing to grow since its establishment we intend to continue building on this momentum and establish ourselves as a credible and capable banking partner.”
In April, Everton gained approval from Liverpool City council to push ahead with plans for the new £300m stadium. The club intends to build a 50,000-capacity venue in the Bramley Moore Dock area of the city.
Jothann Durnall, relationship manager at ICBC London, also said: “There are a number of reasons we’re delighted to reach this agreement with Everton.
“Not only is it our first partnership with a UK football club, but it’s exciting for us to partner with such an ambitious club – we’re all looking forward to seeing the facility we’ve agreed playing a part in the club’s future successes.”
Image: Ben Sutherland