Nigerian billionaire closing in on £2bn takeover at Arsenal

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  • Post published:December 14, 2021

Arsenal could be bracing themselves for a £2-billion takeover from the wealthiest person in Africa, Aliko Dangote.

According to, the move “appears to be edging ever closer”, with the long-time Gooner and business magnate Dangote teasing a takeover for a number of years now.

“It is a team that, yes, I would like to buy someday, but what I keep saying is we have $20bn worth of projects and that’s what I really want to concentrate on,” Dangote was quoted as saying in January 2020. “I’m trying to finish building the company and then, after we finish, maybe sometime in 2021 we can.”

Dangote’s company has been working on an oil refinery outside Lagos, Nigeria, for a number of years. The CEO has repeatedly stated that when work was complete on the project, he would consider buying the north-London club that he supports.

According to S&P Global, the refinery should be operational by early 2022.

Back in 2011, Dangote attempted to buy Lady Nina Bracewell-Smith’s 15.9% stake in the Gunners, claiming: “We backtracked because we were very busy doing other things, especially our industrialisation,” adding “when we get this refinery on track, I will have enough time and enough resources to pay what they are asking for”.

With discontent reigning at the Emirates Stadium with the ownership, this could be big news for Arsenal fans – whether or not the takeover actually happens.

Most recently, Spotify founder Daniel Ek has expressed his interest in buying Arsenal from the Kroenke family, backed by all-time Gunners scorer Thierry Henry. Josh Kroenke categorically denied the club being for sale in autumn of this year in an interview with Sky – but displeasure with KSE’s handling of the club has already reached an all-time high this year.

Arsenal’s home match against Everton last season was marred by a demonstration outside the Emirates, with thousands of Gooners protesting against the ownership in the wake of the Super League debacle. The Kroenkes have since responded by investing over £130m into the playing squad and backing manager Mikel Arteta.

But with the likes of Dangote and Ek poised to launch takeover bids – and with both big Arsenal supporters who can make appeals to fanbase – KSE understand that their popularity will continue to wane, unless their brand starts achieving on the field.