March 3, 2017 / 5:12 PM / 6 months ago

Chinese investors committed to AC Milan deal despite delay

The AC Milan logo is pictured on a pennant in a soccer store in downtown Milan, Italy April 29, 2015.Stefano Rellandini/File Photo

MILAN (Reuters) - The Chinese investors due to buy Italian storied soccer club AC Milan said on Friday that they remained committed to the deal and that the delays in the closing were out of their control.

The accord, signed in August with Italian former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, was supposed to be sealed on March 3 but sources told Reuters on Tuesday that the Chinese investors were seeking a further delay.

The consortium, grouped under investment vehicle Sino-Europe Sports Investment Management Changxing (SES), said in a statement it was disappointed for the delays and that the reasons for a new postponing were "outside its control".

SES added that it remained committed to continue working with Berlusconi's investment vehicle Fininvest, which has owned AC Milan for three decades, and that it already had a detailed plan of investment for the prized soccer club.

Talks between SES and Berlusconi could last some more days and a new closing is expected around the end of March, two sources told Reuters earlier on Friday.

The agreement values the club at 740 million euros ($788 million) including 220 million euros of debt and was originally supposed to close at the end of last year.

Reporting by Giulia Segreti and Elvira Pollina; editing by Francesca Landini

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