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Israeli billionaire buys 15 percent stake in Atletico Madrid

November 16, 2017
FILE - This is a Tuesday, Sept. 26, 2017. file photo of the Wanda Metropolitano stadium in Madrid. With Atletico Madrid’s president and other club officials standing by the team’s shield, an archbishop celebrated the ceremony to bless the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium. Former players and priests were also present at the private ritual by the pitch of the 68,000-capacity venue in mid November. (AP Photo/Francisco Seco)
FILE - This is a Tuesday, Sept. 26, 2017. file photo of the Wanda Metropolitano stadium in Madrid. With Atletico Madrid’s president and other club officials standing by the team’s shield, an archbishop celebrated the ceremony to bless the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium. Former players and priests were also present at the private ritual by the pitch of the 68,000-capacity venue in mid November. (AP Photo/Francisco Seco)

MADRID (AP) — Atletico Madrid says Quantum Pacific Group, an industrial conglomerate led by Israeli billionaire Idan Ofer, is acquiring a 15 percent stake in the club for 50 million euros ($59 million).

Atletico says the money will be invested through a new share issue and will go directly into the club for its development.

“Quantum Pacific Group’s entrance in the share capital will allow the club to reinforce its own funds in a significant way,” Atletico said in a statement on Thursday. “It will also help in the expansion of the Atletico de Madrid brand.”

Atletico, the third force in Spanish soccer behind Barcelona and Real Madrid, has been steadily gaining strength on and off the field.

It has become a perennial contender in Spain and in Europe, and has been attracting lucrative sponsorship deals and significantly increasing its earnings from television rights.

The club also announced that it renewed its partnership with the online trading platform Plus500 to the 2020-21 season.

Chinese Wanda Group bought a 20 percent stake in the Spanish club two years ago. The team’s recently inaugurated stadium was named Wanda Metropolitano.

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