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Russian billionaire considers selling stake in AS Monaco

Russian billionaire Dmitry Rybolovlev is exploring the possibility of selling his stake in Ligue 1 club AS Monaco.

Rybolovlev has been the majority owner of Monaco since 2011.

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After Les Echos newspaper reported that the fertilizer magnate was open to selling the club and had mandated The Raine Group to work on a total or partial divestment project, a representative of Rybolovlev’s family office confirmed the move.

“The majority shareholder of AS Monaco has decided to commence a process to explore strategic alternatives for its stake in the club after receiving unsolicited inbound interest,” the representative said in an email to The Associated Press. “The majority shareholder has retained The Raine Group to serve as its exclusive financial adviser on this matter.”

Rybolovlev testified in a New York court this month after filing a lawsuit against Sotheby’s, accusing the auction house of cheating him out tens of millions of dollars by selling famous artworks to him at marked up prices.

In all, Rybolovlev spent about $2 billion on art from 2002 to 2014 as he built a world-class art collection.

In 2018, Rybolovlev was included on a list that the Trump administration released of 114 Russian politicians and oligarchs it said were linked to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

However, he was not included on a list of Russian oligarchs sanctioned after Russia attacked Ukraine.

Monaco are one of the most successful French league clubs.

The Principality side have won eight league titles as well as five French Cups. Monaco also reached the Champions League final in 2004, losing 3-0 to FC Porto.

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