Riyadh: Saudi Arabia is planning to offer several sports clubs for privatisation starting Q4-2023, the state news agency said on Monday.
The privatisation project comprises two primary components. The first entails the approval of corporations and public sector organizations investing in sports clubs, with investment amounts corresponding to each club’s value. The second component involves privatizing sports clubs starting from the Q4-2023.
Three strategic objectives underpin the project:
- Fostering investment opportunities and an appealing investment environment in the sports sector;
- Boosting professionalism, governance, and financial sustainability in sports clubs; and
- Enhancing clubs’ competitiveness and infrastructure.
“The privatization and ownership transfer of clubs aims to accelerate progress in a variety of sports across the Kingdom further growing participation, providing cutting edge facilities, increasing competition and nurturing future champions,” Saudi Press Agency said.
The timing of the project is a further boost to the existing momentum and major uptake of sport in Saudi Arabia, with more Saudis playing more sport than ever before as part of more active and healthy lifestyles.
Mass participation in sport has increased from 13 per cent in 2015 to close to 50 per cent in 2022 and the number of sports federations has increased from 32 in 2015 to over 95 in 2022, demonstrating the investment potential.
With over 80 per cent of Saudi Arabia’s population either playing, attending or following football, the project has a major focus on the country’s national sport, which is also experiencing unprecedented growth.
Furthermore, the project aspires to raise the league’s commercial revenues from 450 million riyals in 2022 to over 1.8 billion riyals annually while generating private-sector investment opportunities and increasing the market value of the Roshn Saudi League from 3 billion to more than 8 billion riyals by 2030.