Swedish billionaire Ek, 38, who has enlisted the support of club legends Thierry Henry, Dennis Bergkamp and Patrick Vieira, is expected to submit his first offer – in the region of £1.8 billion – in the next few days.
The Kroenkes, whose ownership of the club came under renewed opposition following the club’s participation in the failed European Super League last week, insist they “will not entertain any offer“.
Ek expects the Kroenkes to reject his initial offer, but is willing to be patient in what is likely to be a long process.
Speaking to Sky’s sister station CNBC, Ek said;
I have secured the funds for it and I want to bring what I think is a very compelling offer to the owners and I hope they hear me out.
The Swedish billionaire is determined to launch a bid despite Arsenal owner’s insistence that he has no intention of selling.
Stan Kroenke and his son and director Josh put out a joint statement on Tuesday saying that they remain “100per cent committed to Arsenal” and were not interested in selling a stake in the club after furious backlash from the fans after the club’s failed attempt to form a breakaway Super League with 11 other top European sides.
The statement said;
As I started out saying I’ve been a fan for 30 years of this club and I certainly didn’t expect this would happen overnight and I’m prepared that this could be a long journey.
All I can do is prepare what I think is a very thoughtful offer, bring it to them and hope they hear me out.
I just focus on the club, the fans and I focus on trying to bring the club back to glory and I’m first and foremost a fan. That’s the most important thing for me and I want the club to do better. That’s my primary interest.
Speaking about his interest in his boyhood club, the Swedish billionaire told CNBC;
I’ve been an Arsenal fan since I was 8 years old. Arsenal is my team. I live the history, the players, and of course I love the fans. So as I look at that I just see a tremendous opportunity to set a real vision for the club, to bring it back to its glory.
I want to establish trust with the fans and engage the fans again. So, I’m very serious. I have secured the funds for it and I want to bring what I think is a very compelling offer to the owners and I hope they hear me out.
Ek, who co-founded Spotify in 2006 and is worth an estimated £3.4bn, does not consider his approach to buy the club as personal and was careful not to criticise the current owners during his television appearance.
Stan Kroenke, who owns Kroenke Sports & Entertainment (KSE), has been Arsenal’s owner since April 2011.