Serie A Club Atalanta have sold a 55% stake in their club to Boston Celtics owner Stephen Pagliuca after weeks of trying to play down the report of the sale.
There have been rumours in the past week that the Percassi family, owners of Atalanta, were prepared to pack up and leave the club after over 10 years at the helm which saw them take La Dea from Serie B to the Champions League.
They have finally cleared the air as the supposed sale has been announced as a partnership with a group of American investors which will also see Stephen Pagliuca, the co-owner of the NBA team Boston Celtics, come on the Atalanta board as the co-chairman.
A statement on the Atalanta website announcing the partnership reads: “The agreement provides for the entry of the new investors with a 55% total stake in the share capital of La Dea Srl (“La Dea”).
“The Percassi family will retain a 45% stake. La Dea is the sub-holding of the Percassi family, holder of about 86% of the share capital of Atalanta.
“The Percassi family will remain the single largest shareholder and the governance will reflect an equal partnership: Antonio and Luca Percassi will retain their respective roles of Chairman and CEO of the Club, while Stephen Pagliuca will be appointed Co-Chairman of the Club.”
Antonio Percassi, speaking on behalf of the family, noted that Atalanta has grown to be a Serie A power and they wish to make the club an even bigger brand hence the partnership with Stephen Pagliuca and the group of investors.
Speaking to Atalanta’s official media, Antonio Percassi said: “My family and I, have taken this opportunity to partner with a group who shares our vision to continue the growth and success of our team, choosing to remain committed to the Club that over the last ten years has delivered exceptional results, that perhaps no one would have expected from a so called ‘provinciale.
“Atalanta, in whose ranks I played in the ’60s, is and will remain in my heart as it is in the hearts of thousands of fans who support it.
“Great challenges await us and my conviction is that the Partnership with such high profile investors will speed up our path of growth.”
Stephen Pagliuca, a venture capitalist, had a few words to say about the partnership between himself, the group of unnamed American investors and the Percassi family.
“We are thrilled to partner with the Percassi family and to support the future development of the Club,” said Pagliuca.
“Atalanta and Boston Celtics share the common sports values: teamwork and an extraordinary relationship with the fans and the community.
“We believe that the Percassi family has built very solid foundations on which to work together to strengthen the brand globally, with the aim of encouraging further diversification and growth of revenues, allowing the club to become more and more competitive on Italian and international scene.”