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ORLANDO CITY SC ADDS INVESTOR

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Courtesy: MLS Soccer contributor Dylan Butler

mlssoccer.com

 

Albert Friedberg, the founder and president of a Toronto-based investment firm, has purchased a minority share of Orlando City SC, the club announced Wednesday. The deal puts Orlando City’s enterprise value at $490 million.

Friedberg is the founder and president of Friedberg Mercantile Group Lld., the principal strategist of the firm and is the sole manager of two mutual funds that bear his name. In addition, he serves as chairman and president of the FCMI group of companies, his family holding entities, which are involved in a wide range of investments that include real estate, mining and forestry operations.

“The US soccer market has shown signs of great strength, which we’ve seen at both the club and league level. We have been approached by interested investors over the years, but I committed enough capital to carry out each step of this project so far and kept expansion opportunities on the back burner,” Orlando City SC majority owner Flavio Augusto da Silva said in a statement. “Today, however, we have taken the opportunity to become partners with an experienced and strategic investor in Albert, who, in addition to financial contributions, brings strong business and finance knowledge to help with projects that lie ahead for the improvement of our product on and off the field.”

Born in Lyon, France and raised in Uruguay, Friedberg was also a minority shareholder in Scotland’s Celtic FC from 1994-1999.

“I am delighted to be part of Orlando City SC, one of the best managed and most financially solid teams in MLS,” Friedberg said in a statement. “I am extremely gratified to have partnered with Flavio, whose vision and integrity are legendary, and with his very experienced team. Under their able direction, Orlando City SC will be certain to share in the explosive growth that I see ahead for soccer in the US.”

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