Serie A president tests positive for COVID-19 ahead of meeting on fund bids

Serie A President Paolo Dal Pino has tested positive for COVID-19, Italy’s top flight soccer league said in a statement on Tuesday, days before an Oct. 9 meeting to assess bids by private equity funds for a stake in its media business.

A former telecoms executive, Dal Pino was appointed at the helm of Serie A in January, shortly before the COVID-19 outbreak brought the championship to a three-month standstill.

As closed-door matches and broadcasters cutting off money from deals keep club finances under pressure, Dal Pino has been promoting a project to sell a minority stake in the newly-created media company which manages the league’s main source of revenue.

Two private equity consortia, led by CVC Partners and Bain Capital, are bidding for a stake in the venture offering up to 1.6 billion euros ($1.89 billion). Serie A’s club representatives are expected to hold a meeting on Friday to pick the preferred bidder.

The meeting remains scheduled for Friday despite Dal Pino being in self-isolation with symptoms, a source close to the matter said.