Inter owner sells 70 percent stake to Indonesian group

Reuters
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Inter Milan's Esteban Cambiasso (R) celebrates with his teammate Mauro Icardi after scoring against Fiorentina …

MILAN (Reuters) - Inter Milan owner Massimo Moratti said on Tuesday he had signed a deal to sell a stake in the Italian soccer club to Indonesia's Erick Thohir after months of negotiations with the business tycoon.

He did not give any further details on the deal at this stage but added that a statement would be released later.

Italian media have previously said Thohir, a wealthy businessman with an interest in sports ventures globally, might be willing to pay up to 350 million euros for up to 75 percent of the cash-strapped Serie A club.

"Everything's been signed," Moratti told reporters outside his offices in Milan.

Inter, a loss-making club with debts of about 300 million euros, are traditionally one of the three biggest clubs in Italian soccer with champions Juventus and city rivals AC Milan.

They have not won a trophy since 2010 and finished a disappointing ninth last season, missing out on a place in the lucrative Champions League.

Italian soccer has not attracted the major foreign investment seen in countries like England and France.

Europe's top league in the 1990s, Italy's Serie A has been tarnished by a series of corruption scandals and hooliganism has reduced crowd numbers.

Italian clubs have been held back commercially because many of them do not own their stadiums and have been unable to upgrade them to cater fully for wealthy corporate clients.

Inter, for example, share the San Siro stadium with AC Milan and the ground is owned by the local authorities.

Moratti said he was not sure if he would stay on as president under the new ownership.

His father Angelo Moratti was in charge of the club in the 1960s when Inter won the European Cup twice in successive years.

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