West Ham United have confirmed that Czech billionaire Daniel Kretinsky has completed a deal to buy a 27% stake in the club.
The deal (increasing the club’s value to £700 million), sees the Czech and his colleague Pavel Horsky join the East Londoners. According to Forbes, the qualified lawyer’s fortune is valued at £2.9billion.
The eagle-eyed among us would have spotted Kretinsky at Sunday’s win vs Liverpool – a fantastic game for the new shareholder to witness. Questions began to arise from supporters as to whether the rumoured deal had gone through successfully, as David Sullivan had recently declined two majority stake offers from PAI Capital.
Speaking to whufc.com on the investment, Kretinsky said:
"“I am delighted this detailed process has now been successfully concluded. I am passionate about football. I greatly appreciate and respect the exceptional history and tradition of West Ham United as well as its loyal and passionate supporter base and also the highly inspiring role it plays in many social programmes and initiatives.“The development and growth of the Club in recent years has been clear for everyone to see and I am delighted to be part of what I believe is a very exciting future ahead.“Having been to the London Stadium recently to watch David Moyes’ team, I know it is an incredible time to become part of the West Ham United family. I feel privileged to now have the opportunity to help everyone here build on the proud traditions of this great Club.”"
West Ham United Vice-Chairman Karren Brady said:
"“On behalf of the Board I am very pleased to welcome Daniel Křetínský, Pavel Horský and 1890s holdings a.s to West Ham United. We are always looking to continue to progress and Daniel’s involvement brings investment which strengthens the Club’s position, and in turn will assist in the development of the Club’s key areas of focus.“David Sullivan and David Gold have always been very open about finding the right investors to join them on the journey as custodians of West Ham United, and Daniel’s strong business acumen and football experience will be of huge benefit to the Club. We very much look forward to working with him and Pavel.”"
News of Kretinsky’s investment has been warmly received by West Ham fans, and many hope that a full takeover of the club will be ever-more realistic in the future.