Ken Griffin, the billionaire owner and founder of hedge fund Citadel and high-speed trading firm Citadel Securities, will join the Ricketts family, the owners of Major League Baseball’s Chicago Cubs, in a formal bid for Chelsea Football Club, Griffin’s spokesperson, Zia Ahmed, confirmed to CNN on Wednesday.
Ahmed said Griffin’s bid is an individual one and has nothing to do with the hedge fund business.
“The Ricketts Family, owners of the Chicago Cubs, can confirm they will be leading an investment group that will make a formal bid for Chelsea Football Club this Friday,” the Ricketts Family said in a statement to CNN.
“As long-time operators of an iconic professional sports team, the Ricketts Family and their partners understand the importance of investing for success on the pitch, while respecting the traditions of the club, the fans and the community.
“We look forward to sharing further details of our plans in due course.”
Earlier this month, Chelsea owner and Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich announced he planned to sell the club in the best interests of “the fans, the employees, as well as the Club’s sponsors and partners.” This came after he declared he gave “stewardship” of Chelsea to trustees of the club’s charitable foundation.
On Tuesday, the European Union placed Abramovich on the list of sanctioned individuals, while the UK government sanctioned him last week as part of its efforts to “isolate” Russian President Vladimir Putin following his country’s invasion of Ukraine.
In light of the sanctions, Chelsea has been granted a special license by the UK to continue to play fixtures, but certain actions are not permitted, including the sale of tickets for games beyond those already sold to fans.