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U.S.-based Oaktree seizes ownership of Inter Milan due to $395M debt

Inter Miami players celebrate their Italian Serie A title on Sunday at Stadio Giuseppe Meazza in Milan, Italy. Photo by Matteo Bazzi/EPA-EFE
Inter Miami players celebrate their Italian Serie A title on Sunday at Stadio Giuseppe Meazza in Milan, Italy. Photo by Matteo Bazzi/EPA-EFE

May 22 (UPI) -- Oaktree Capital Management said Monday that it seized ownership of Italian soccer franchise Inter Milan after Chinese conglomerate Suning defaulted on its debt with the U.S.-based investment fund.

Oaktree said the move followed the non-repayment of a three-year loan to Inter Miami, with a total balance due of $395 million. The investment fund provided rescue financing for the club in 2021, including pay for its players and employees, after Inter forecasted record financial losses for the 2020-21 campaign.

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"As new owners, we recognize our responsibility to Inter Milan's community, history and legacy," Oaktree's Alejandro Cano said in a news release. "We are committed to the long-term success of the Nerazzurri and believe our ambitions for the club are united with those of its passionate fans in Italy and around the world.

"Our initial focus is operational and financial stability. We have great respect for Inter Milan's management team and look forward to working closely with them to provide strong leadership for the club. Winning the second star was a pivotal moment for the club and our aim is to build on the momentum achieved on the pitch to develop a clear path for consistent growth and success."

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Inter (29-2-6) won Italy's Serie A this season after a third-place finish in 2022-23 and second-place run in 2021-22.

Since the rescue financing, Inter won two Coppa Italia titles, three Italian Cups and reached a Champions League final, in addition to this season's league title run.

Suning, one of the largest non-government retailers in China, purchased a majority stake in Inter Milan in 2016.

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