US owners strengthen grip on Roma

James Pallotta’s US consortium has strengthened its hold on AS Roma after acquiring Italian banking group UniCredit’s stake in the Serie A football club.

A Roma statement said UniCredit has sold its remaining 31 per cent stake in Roma's controlling company, NEEP Roma Holding SpA, to AS Roma SPV LLP for €33m ($44m). AS Roma SPV LLP now holds 100 per cent of NEEP, which in turn controls a majority 78 per cent stake in the club.

UniCredit has been considering offloading its stake in Roma for a number of months, with a number of foreign parties previously linked with investing in the club. The US consortium led by Roma president Pallotta completed its takeover of the club in August 2011. It is currently progressing with plans to develop a new 52,500-seat stadium in the city in time for the 2016-17 Serie A season.

In March, it was announced that US private investment firm Starwood Capital Group would partner Roma on the development of its proposed new stadium after acquiring a minority stake in the club. By virtue of its minority stake, Starwood became a real estate capital partner in both Roma’s new stadium and the adjacent Tor di Valle complex.

Roma finished as runner-up to champion Juventus last season and commences its 2014-15 Serie A campaign with a home game against Fiorentina on August 30.