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Team Sky expected to be saved by Britain's richest person

Sir Jim Ratcliffe's chemical company Ineos expected to take over Team Sky sponsorship

Joe Robinson
15 Mar 2019

Britain's richest person and keen cyclist Sir Jim Ratcliffe looks set to save Team Sky through his chemical company Ineos, which is expected to take control of the British WorldTour team in 2020.

The Daily Mail reported earlier this month that Ratcliffe was in talks with Sir Dave Brailsford about the possibilty of a potential takeover – one of several buyers reported as being interested in purchasing the team.

This was seemingly backed up by Team Sky sport director Matteo Tossato who told Spanish newspaper Marca at the UAE Tour that a new sponsor had been secured and would be announced before the Giro d'Italia. The Italian also confirmed that the replacement for Team Sky would be from Europe.

This after Brailsford denied that meetings with Colombian president Ivan Duque were in order to discuss the potential creation of the first Colombian WorldTour team.

It's now believed that confirmation of the Ineos takeover is imminent.

It has also been reported that the internet domain name was registered on March 5th and that the Twitter account named @teamineous has also been registered.

Ratcliffe's reported personal worth is £21bn, making him Britain's richest person. Last year, he made enquiries to purchase Premier League football club Chelsea from Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich. He is also reported to have invested £110m into Ben Ainslie's sailing team for the next Americas Cup.

Ineos is currently the second-largest chemical company in the world, with Ratcliffe owning a 60 per cent stake in the company.

Ratcliffe is reportedly also pro-Brexit and was criticised recently for moving to the principality of Monaco, home to Geraint Thomas and Chris Froome, in order to avoid a rumoured £4m tax bill.

Broadcaster Sky will bring an end to its ten-year sponsorship this season after being purchased by media company Comcast. The company announced the decision was part of a switch in focus to a wider range of projects, including grassroots cricket and environmental issues.