SailGP supremo Sir Ben Ainslie has secured a significant injection of private investment into the fast-growing, environmentally-conscious global league.
The most successful Olympic sailor of all time owns a majority stake in the Great Britain SailGP team, joining the likes of LeBron James and Serena Williams as an athlete-owner.
Now London-based private fund Misland Capital have jumped on board, joining Chris Bake as an equal minority stakeholder at a valuation of $40m.
“It’s fantastic Misland Capital has opted to join the team,” said Ainslie, who is the only athlete in the league to hold ownership out of the nine competing teams.
“As SailGP continues to grow, hopefully we’ll see more teams become privately owned with inward investment.”
In just its third season, SailGP has grown from six teams to nine, and five events to 11 – all set at iconic locations around the world (including San Francisco and Chicago); with more expansion on both fronts already announced for Season 4.
The league’s broadcast success underscores a banner year for the global racing property that includes already increasing its global dedicated TV audience by 56 percent from last season to over 64.5 million, and growing its total live digital viewership by 240 percent in the same time period (26.6 million).
Ainslie said: “With Season 3 seeing unprecedented growth in the form of an expanded global calendar, increased teams, new owners, commercial partners and history breaking viewing figures – Season 4’s calendar looks on a strong growth trajectory.”
Midland Capital already has considerable experience in the leisure industry and an ongoing relationship with the global league, having purchased The Fairmont Hamilton Princess from Global Hospitality Investments back in 2012 and secured title partner for the Bermuda Sail Grand Prix in 2022.
A spokesperson from Misland Capital said: “Both the Great Britain team and SailGP have been doing brilliant work to grow the sport, take action against climate change and focus on bringing gender equity to the sport by providing training pathways for success. We are truly excited to join the Great Britain SailGP Team.”
The Great Britain SailGP Team return to action for the inaugural Singapore Sail Grand Prix on the 14/15th January 2023 following a podium finish and an exciting final race at the previous event in Dubai.