The wealthiest individual directly involved with Paris Saint-Germain is the club‘s Qatari president Nasser Al-Khelaifi. His net worth as of 2023 is estimated at approximately $8 billion.
This makes Al-Khelaifi one of the richest people in world football, thanks both to his ownership stake in PSG and his extensive business interests outside of sport.
Al-Khelaifi‘s Role and Net Worth
- Al-Khelaifi has been PSG‘s president and chief executive officer since 2011, overseeing its transformation under Qatari ownership.
- His net worth stems from chairing beIN Media Group, a global sports and entertainment network, along with other lucrative positions.
- But Al-Khelaifi also owns an undisclosed stake in Qatar Sports Investments (QSI) – the state-backed entity which directly controls PSG.
- Forbes estimates his overall net worth at $8 billion as of 2023. This makes him the wealthiest individual figure involved with running PSG.
PSG‘s Ownership Structure
While Al-Khelaifi runs PSG‘s daily operations, the club is ultimately owned by Qatar‘s state. The ownership structure is:
- Qatar Sports Investments (QSI) – The direct owners of PSG, a subsidiary of Qatar‘s sovereign wealth fund.
- Qatar Investment Authority – Qatar‘s $450 billion sovereign wealth fund which founded QSI in 2005.
- State of Qatar – The gulf nation‘s government provides the underlying funding via the sovereign fund.
QSI acquired PSG in 2011, instantly transforming them into a hugely rich club backed by Qatar‘s enormous wealth and assets.
PSG‘s Remarkable Growth Since 2011
PSG‘s revenue, value, sponsorships and playing squad have all exploded in scale thanks to Qatar‘s takeover:
|Main shirt sponsor||€1.8m p/yr (Fly Emirates)||€65m p/yr (Nike)||+€63.2m p/yr|
Their annual revenue has grown over six-fold since 2011, now exceeding €650 million. Qatar‘s investment has catapulted them into Europe‘s financial elite.
Dwarving Their Domestic Rivals
This wealth has given PSG massive advantages domestically. PSG‘s annual revenue is now five times larger than nearest Ligue 1 rivals Lyon and Marseille:
Their squad cost of nearly €1 billion also massively outstrips any other French side. This financial dominance helps explain PSG‘s routine Ligue 1 triumphs.
Challenging Europe‘s Super Clubs
PSG‘s finances can now compete with traditional giants like Barcelona, Real Madrid and Manchester United.
Deloitte ranks PSG‘s revenue as 6th highest in football for 2021/22, just behind Bayern Munich. Their growth has been achieved in just over a decade.
|1. Real Madrid||€778m|
|3. Man Utd||€583m|
|5. Man City||€644m|
However, despite now being able to afford superstar players like Messi, Mbappe and Neymar, PSG are yet to win the prestigious Champions League.
Transfer Spending Since the Takeover
PSG‘s owners have invested monumental sums on player transfers since 2011 – over €1.4 billion on inbounds alone:
|Year||Transfer Spend||Major Signings|
|2012||€150m||Ibrahimovic, Thiago Silva|
|2021||€115m||Messi, Ramos, Donnarumma|
This has allowed them to consistently break the world record fees paid for players like Neymar. PSG‘s rebuild into an elite squad has been financed by Qatar‘s deep pockets.
Their estimated annual wage bill stands at over €370 million as of 2022, again among the very highest in football.
Controversies Around PSG‘s Funding
Unsurprisingly, PSG‘s sudden dominance based on state funding has been controversial.
PSG has faced accusations of:
- Financially "doping" the club – Huge funding perceived as distorting competition.
- Sportswashing – Using football to boost Qatar‘s reputation despite human rights concerns.
- Circumventing rules – Channeling money via inflated Qatar-linked sponsorship deals to bypass UEFA‘s Financial Fair Play regulations.
- Damaging football – Distorting the transfer market and wage inflation with exorbitant spending.
Qatar and PSG reject these claims. They argue the investment brings positive attention, tourism and business to Qatar. Commercially, it has undoubtedly helped grow PSG into a hugely valuable global brand.
The controversies look set to continue as Qatar continues pumping billions into PSG to achieve their ultimate goal – winning the Champions League.