French Ligue 1 club Nice has been bought by Ineos, the chemical company founded by British billionaire Sir Jim Ratcliffe.

Ratcliffe, who is Britain’s third richest man, had reportedly made a €100m (£88.77m) offer for the club earlier this year.

Nice, managed by former and France midfielder Patrick Vieira, will be part of the ‘Ineos Football’ group.

“It has been quite a long journey getting here,” said Ratcliffe, 66.

“We have looked at a lot of clubs in the manner we look at businesses in Ineos – for value and potential – and Nice fulfils that criteria.”

Ratcliffe took over and rebranded cycling’s Team Sky in May and also invested £110m in Britain’s America’s Cup sailing team last year.

Ineos also owns Ss second division side Lausanne, which the firm took over in 2017.

“We made some mistakes at Lausanne, but we are fast learners, these have been rectified and we are already seeing the benefits,” Ratcliffe added.

“Clubs need to be successful off the pitch, as well as on it, and Nice will be no different.”

The deal was approved by the French Competition Authority last week.


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