Gasly’s stake in FC Versailles: Beyond a token gesture

Alexandre Mulliez, the president of FC Versailles, ardently refutes the notion that Pierre Gasly’s investment in the club is merely symbolic. In contrast to the previous year’s trend where celebrities’ engagements with the Alpine F1 team—where Gasly competes—were largely viewed as superficial, Gasly’s foray into FC Versailles represents a considerable commitment. FC Versailles, currently competing in the third tier of French football, has garnered attention with Gasly’s involvement, sparking speculation about the nature of his investment.

Mulliez shared with RMC Sport, “He owns the club at the same level as me and Fabien (Lazare).” Revealing the depth of Gasly’s involvement, Mulliez added, “He asked us not to say the amount, but it is significant. It is not 3 or 4 percent.”

The president hopes that Gasly’s prominent role will elevate the club’s profile, potentially attracting partnerships similar to a Netflix documentary deal. Mulliez admitted to drafting a list of around 20 potential high-profile supporters, including athletes and entertainers, with Gasly topping the list due to Mulliez’s admiration for Formula 1 and desire for a partner knowledgeable about performance.

“At the top of the list was Pierre because I am a fan of F1 and I wanted someone who could also support us on the subject of performance,” Mulliez disclosed. The connection was made possible through Charles Leclerc’s brother, leading to a fruitful meeting. “Charles Leclerc’s brother put us in touch, we met two months ago and after 10 minutes, we knew that we were going to join forces,” he said.

Mulliez highlighted Gasly’s passion for football and his interest in leveraging his sports and business acumen to aid in the club’s growth. Emphasizing a shared vision for the club’s future, Mulliez conveyed, “He invests in companies and he wanted to bring his expertise in sport and his notoriety to help a club grow. He was looking for a long-term project, not to partner with a club that will grow and be sold. I hope to be there forever and we share the same values, the same principles. So he thought it might be fun.”

The non-professional status of the third tier poses challenges, but Mulliez is optimistic about the club’s progression to the professional ranks of Ligue 2, aided by Gasly’s guidance. The ambitious roadmap includes substantial recruitment to professionalize the club, aiming to blend performance with a close-knit community ethos. “We want to become pros, which means moving up to L2 in the next two years,” Mulliez affirmed. “We have already recruited quite a bit because we took over a club that was not structured. 55 employees with the players. The goal is to perform while remaining small. We want to remain a family club.”

GMM

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