English Premier League soccer giants Chelsea have become the latest team to join the multi-club ownership model by buying a stake in French side Racing Club (RC) Strasbourg.

BlueCo, the consortium which purchased Chelsea in May 2022, has bought an unknown stake in the club. However, according to a report by UK public broadcaster the BBC, BlueCo will pay €75 million ($81 million) for close to 100% ownership.              

Marc Keller will stay on as president of the French club, as will his current management team.

Keller, a former international and Premier League player, became RC Strasbourg's president in June 2012 when the club was in danger of going into liquidation for a second year running. Since then, Keller has taken the club from CFA, the fourth tier of French soccer to the top-tier Ligue 1 in five years.

Keller said: “This is an important day for Racing. It’s something my shareholder friends and I have been thinking about for the past two years. We’ve built a club that’s healthy at every level and well-managed.

“Although there was no financial urgency, we were aware that we had reached the ceiling of our model, and if we wanted to continue driving Racing forward and projecting it into a new dimension, we necessarily needed to be accompanied by a solid structure capable of supporting our development and our ambition.

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By GlobalData

“I am therefore delighted of the perspective to welcome a new strategic investor, with whom we would accelerate the club’s ambition to build the Racing of tomorrow.

“The aim is to enable Racing to be even more ambitious and competitive in a football world that has changed considerably, particularly with the massive arrival of foreign investors in many French clubs and the evolution of Ligue 1 from 20 to 18 clubs. 

“It’s a question of putting in place the conditions for a new ambition, moving forward with continuity, building on the foundations that have made us successful. I am proud, after 11 years of hard work with all those who have contributed to its success, to enable the club to further its ambition, with responsibility. We’re doing it for our fans, for our partners, for our town and our region”

BlueCo's shareholders added: “We are committed to preserving the heritage of Racing and are focused on working closely with Marc and his management team to continue the excellent work they have been doing.

“This strategic investment would further our presence in European football, alongside our ownership of Chelsea. We believe it would create huge opportunities to share knowledge and expertise.”

BlueCo claims that it plans to help develop the model implemented by Keller, by providing capital for investment in the men’s and women’s first teams, the academy, and across the club in general.

BlueCo added it plans to collaborate with Racing through the exchange of information with Chelsea and the other teams which the owners are involved with.

Since acquiring Chelsea last year, the consortium fronted by American Todd Boehly and private equity group Clearlake Capital had been seeking other clubs to invest in, including teams in France, Belgium, Portugal, and South America.

Talks were reportedly held with the French side Bordeaux but, the deal with Strasbourg made more financial sense, according to UK news outlet The Guardian. 

Over the past year, Boehly has spoken openly about his plan to create a multi-club network and provide a pathway for Chelsea’s young players.

Speaking at the Salt Conference last September, he said: “We’re going to be continuously adding resources. We’ve talked about having a multi-club model. I would love to continue to build out the footprint. There are different countries where there are advantages to having a club.

Red Bull does a really good job at Leipzig and at Salzburg, both of which are playing in the Champions League, so they’ve figured out how to make that work. You also have Manchester City which has a very big network of clubs.”

The West London-based club is also understood to be eyeing a stake in Portuguese outfit Portimonense.