Real estate investor Cheick Sanankoua is investing in African sports.
Sanankoua, former Merrill Lynch analyst and Helios Investment Partners investment adviser, is the founder and chairman of Omega Sports Holding LLC, a private investment firm that launched in 2022 alongside Jean-Luc Agboyibo (CEO) to disrupt the sports industry.
According to his Bloomberg, the firm is looking to fulfill a “$50 million investment push into African sports over the next three years.”
“We are coming in at an early investment stage, with a plan to bring more institutional investment into African sports and to try and create a bigger economy around the sector,” said Sanankoua, 40, according to Bloomberg.
The outlet reports Omega Sports Holding previously invested in Abidjan Basketball Club. Now, the firm has signed off on a second deal, purchasing minority stake in Racing Club d’Abidjan.
The Ivory Coast-based team, founded in 1948, is a partner club of OGC Nice, which is owned by billionaire Jim Ratcliffe. The team is reportedly among some of the most successful in the country with a No. 8 ranking, per Football Database.
“Thrilled to announce that Omega Sports Holding LLC has entered into a strategic partnership with the Racing Club d’Abidjan and its brilliant Founder & President Souleymane Cisse,” Sanankoua wrote on LinkedIn. “This collaboration underscores OSH’s commitment to develop Africa’s thriving sports market, which offers significant economic and social prospects. Partnering with RCA aligns perfectly with our vision. This venture strengthens not only OSH’s portfolio, but also our dedication to encouraging initiatives that promote sports development and youth empowerment. Beyond super-events like the Africa Nations Cup, there is a need to develop high-impact and local initiatives to ensure sustainable development and the rise of African sport.”
Specific details surrounding the purchase were not disclosed. However, funds were raised through Sanankoua’s personal finances, supported by other investments and ventures in real estate.
Additionally, Sanankoua told Bloomberg that Omega Sports Holding gained support from “high net worth individuals and family offices” across the United States, Europe, Middle East, and Asia.