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Sale's future is Orange as CorpAcq are announced as new owners

Published 09/06/2016

Sale, who play at the AJ Bell Stadium, finished sixth in the Aviva Premiership last season.
Sale, who play at the AJ Bell Stadium, finished sixth in the Aviva Premiership last season.

Sale have announced Manchester-based firm CorpAcq Ltd is the Aviva Premiership club's new owner.

The corporate acquisitions and investment company, controlled by Simon Orange, is taking over from businessman Brian Kennedy, who has had 16 years of ownership.

That period has seen the club crowned Premiership champions in 2006 and win the European Challenge Cup in 2002 and 2005.

Having finished sixth in the top flight last season, they will play in the 2016-17 Champions Cup.

Orange said in a statement on Sale's official website on Thursday: "Sale have performed resiliently over the past 16 years under the ownership of Brian Kennedy and now we believe we can build on this success and take Sale Sharks to another level.

"With our planned investment I think we can close the gap between Sale Sharks and the teams above us.

"We intend to establish Manchester as a Premiership rugby region.

"The academy is one of the best in the Premiership...and we plan further investment in order to strengthen it.

"I hope rugby fans from the region will support Sale Sharks and help us to build a dominant northern powerhouse both on and off the field."

Kennedy said: "The last 16 years at the helm of this great club has been a great privilege.

"We have had many wonderful moments, particularly winning two European trophies and the Premiership championship for the first time in the club's history.

"My business partner Ian Blackhurst and myself now hand the club over debt free and in healthy order to Simon Orange and his substantial business group CorpAcq.

"We are confident Simon and his team have the right credentials, energy and passion to take the club to the next level and we wish them and the club the greatest of success in the future."

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