Egyptian billionaire Nassef Sawiris is not a stranger when it comes to investing in football. He made global headlines in 2018 when he acquired stakes in the English football side, Aston Villa.
Five years later, Sawiris is back in the headlines after agreeing to buy a 46 percent stake in Vitoria Sport Clube, a Portuguese professional football club playing in the country’s top elite division, the Primeira Liga.
He acquired the 46 percent stake through his holding company V Sports, Billionaire Africa reported. The deal is reportedly worth $5.85 million and also represents Sawiris’ plans to expand his football portfolio.
Commenting on the latest deal, the Egyptian billionaire said the partnership between V Sports and Vitoria Sport Clube has been in motion for two years.
“V Sports is delighted to be partnering with Vitoria Sport Clube,” he said, “Discussions which have been ongoing for almost two years, have progressed thanks to the positive steps taken by the new management team led by Antonio Miguel Cardoso, whose energy and vision has been a crucial component in reaching this agreement.”
On his part, Vitoria Sport Clube President Antonio Miguel Cardoso said, aside from the $5.85 million from the sale of the shares, Sawiris will invest $2.13 million in club infrastructure and also provide $21.3 million to support the club’s operations.
Sawiris is the Chairman of Orascom Construction Industries – one of the largest nitrogen fertilizer manufacturing firms in the world. It has plants in Texas and Iowa and its shares are traded on the Euronext Amsterdam bourses.
Orascom Construction Industries also operates Orascom Construction, which is an engineering and construction contractor. The firm trades on the Cairo and Nasdaq Dubai bourses and is one of the largest players in the engineering and construction sector in the Middle East region.
One of his most valuable assets is a 7% stake in Adidas. He also acquired a 5% stake in the New York-listed firm, Madison Square Garden Sports, which owns the New York Knicks, Rangers, Liberty the Hartford Wolf Pack of the American Hockey League, and the Westchester Knicks. He also owns a stake in cement giant Lafarge Holcim.
His net worth is $7.3 Billion. In 2021, Forbes Middle East named him the world’s richest Arab billionaire.
Nassef Sawiris is the second in his family. He had his secondary education at the Deutsche Evangelische Oberschule Kairo, an exclusive German school in Dokki, Giza, Egypt, in the Cairo metropolitan area. He later enrolled at the University of Chicago, where he received a bachelor’s degree in economics in 1982.