Africa’s richest man Aliko Dangote is closer to buying the football club he loves, Arsenal FC.
The 58-year-old Kano State indigene says by the time he completes the building of an oil refinery in his homeland, he would have the financial muscle to secure a takeover. The refinery is expected to be ready by 2017.
“When we get this refinery on track, I will have enough time and enough resources to pay what they are asking for,” Dangote was quoted to have told BBC Hausa.
“There were a couple of us who were rushing to buy, and we thought with the prices then, the people who were interested in selling were trying to go for a kill,” Dangote added.
“We backtracked, because we were very busy doing other things, especially our industrialisation.”
Dangote’s business acumen, especially in manufacturing is undoubted but he has no experience in sports investments, unlike American, Stan Kroenke, Arsenal’s majority shareholder, who owns 66.64 percent of the club’s parent company Arsenal Holdings Plc.
“They are doing well,” Dangote said of Arsenal, “but they need another strategic direction. They need more direction than the current situation, where they just develop players and sell them”.