Tom Brady, co-owner of Birmingham City, is helping bring Wayne Rooney back to English football. The former Manchester United legend has parted ways with MLS's DC United to take charge back stateside of the Championship side. But how exactly did Brady have a say in Rooney's hiring? Let's look at Brady's percentage ownership of Birmingham City and define his role at the club.
How much of the Midlanders does Brady own?
Last August, the legendary NFL quarterback Tom Brady became a minority owner and advisory board chair at Birmingham City. The ownership was part of his partnership with Blues' owners Knighthead Capitol Managment LLC and its UK subsidiary Shelby Companies Ltd, who took a 46% stake in Birmingham City and 100% of the club's grounds, St. Andrews, last July. Co-founder of the parent company and now chairman of Birmingham's board, Tom Wagner, tipped Brady to drive the team's brand awareness and winning culture.
“As Chairman of the Advisory Board, Brady will apply his extensive leadership experience and expertise across several components of the Club, including working alongside the sports science department to advise on health, nutrition, wellness, and recovery systems and programs,” read a Birmingham City statement.
“In addition, Brady will work closely with the Board and the management team on global marketing efforts and the identification of new commercial partnership opportunities for the Club.”
Brady is also part of Wagner's ownership group that bought a Major League Pickleball expansion team in October 2022. But the seven-time Super Bowl winner remains focused on his new football project in the UK.
Said Brady upon taking the Birmingham City role: “Birmingham City is an iconic club with so much history and passion and to be part of the Blues is a real honor for me.
“BCFC is built on teamwork and determination and I'm excited to work alongside the board, management and players to make our Second City club second to none.
“I've been part of some amazing teams in my day, and I'm looking forward to applying my perspective to create that same success here in Birmingham.”
So what percentage of Birmingham City does Brady own exactly?
As a Knighthead Capitol Managment LLC partner, including its subsidiary Shelby Companies Ltd, we estimate that Brady owns at least a 5% stake in Birmingham City. That may sound like a small number, but NBA legend Lebron James owns a 2% stake in Liverpool as part of his involvement with Fenway Sports Group (FSG), who owns the Reds. Lebron's initial 2011 investment has ballooned from $6 million to at least $50 million today.
Under Brady's leadership, Birmingham City could one day bask in similar success. But first, the storied club must gain promotion to the Premier League, which it hasn't sniffed in over a decade. Can Brady follow in the footsteps of the UK's newest football club owners, Ryan Reynolds (Wrexham) and the NBA's Russell Westbrook, a principal Leeds United investor? What about fellow NFL footballer JJ Watts who invested in Burnley?
Given Brady's caliber and consistency, the Birmingham project seems to be only a matter of time before grand success.