List of fan-owned sports teams
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This is a partial list of professional or semi-professional sports teams that are owned by fans (via either a collective organisation or where the assumption of majority ownership by a small group is prohibited by the club's constitution or governing documents) from all over the world sorted by home country. Teams playing at every level in each country are shown.
- 1 American football
- 2 Association football
- 2.1 Argentina
- 2.2 Australia
- 2.3 Austria
- 2.4 Belarus
- 2.5 Belgium
- 2.6 Bulgaria
- 2.7 Canada
- 2.8 Costa Rica
- 2.9 Croatia
- 2.10 Czech Republic
- 2.11 England
- 2.12 Finland
- 2.13 Germany
- 2.14 Greece
- 2.15 Indonesia
- 2.16 Ireland
- 2.17 Israel
- 2.18 Italy
- 2.19 Japan
- 2.20 Mali
- 2.21 Nigeria
- 2.22 Poland
- 2.23 Portugal
- 2.24 Romania
- 2.25 Scotland
- 2.26 South Korea
- 2.27 Spain
- 2.28 Sweden
- 2.29 Turkey
- 2.30 United States
- 2.31 Uruguay
- 2.32 Wales
- 3 Australian Rules football
- 4 Baseball
- 5 Basketball
- 6 Canadian Football
- 7 Futsal
- 8 Ice hockey
- 9 Rugby League
- 10 See also
- 11 References
- Green Bay Packers — The only fan-owned team in any of North America's four traditional major leagues, the Packers have been owned by a community-based corporation since 1923. The NFL currently bans such an ownership structure, but grandfathered in the Packers ownership.
- In Argentina every football club is owned by its fans.
- Townsville Crocodiles – In August 2013, the Crocodiles announced that Barrier Reef Basketball Pty Ltd was relinquishing its National Basketball League license, putting the Crocodiles' 2013–14 season in doubt. In September 2013, the Crocodiles re-entered the league as a community owned club under head coach, Shawn Dennis.
- SV Austria Salzburg – The club was formed in 2005, by some of the supporters of the original SV (Austria) Salzburg after it was renamed FC Red Bull Salzburg by new owners, which caused a group of supporters, known as the "Violet-Whites", to want to preserve the 72-year-old traditions of their club, which they felt had been ignored by Red Bull.
- SK Rapid Wien
- PFC Botev Plovdiv
- F.C. Spartak Varna – The club was formed in 2010 by PFC Spartak Varna supporters following Injstroi Holding's controversial takeover which led to most of its supporters defecting from the club.
- Victoria Highlanders F.C. – majority owner Alex Campbell Jr. publicly announced that the purchase of season tickets will give supporters "an ownership share in the club and a voice in its direction". Season ticket holders are members of the Victoria Highlanders Supporters Society, which owns 30% of the club and holds two seats (of nine) on the club's advisory board. The club however disbanded in 2014 and when it was re-founded a year later in 2015, it did not involve fan-ownership.
- NK Varteks – founded by supporters dissatisfied with the situation in NK Varaždin.
- NK Zagreb 041 - founded in 2014 as fans were dissatisfied with the situation in NK Zagreb.
- Aylesbury United F.C. – In July 2009, The Aylesbury United Supporters Trust was able to gain control of the club, which thus became a fan-owned football team.
- Bamber Bridge F.C.
- Chelmsford City F.C. – The club is currently registered as a company limited by guarantee (CLG) and claims to be owned by its members. However, as of 2015, the club intends to convert to a community benefit society.
- Congleton Town F.C. – The clubs shareholding was passed over to a newly formed supporters Trust in 2014
- Dorchester Town F.C. – from 2013 the Supporters Trust own a joint majority shareholding in the club.
- Exeter City F.C. – Following relegation to the Conference in 2003, the club was taken over by the Exeter City Supporters' Trust.
- Hendon F.C.
- Hyde United F.C. - Buyout from former owner John Manship occurred on 2015-06-27.
- Lewes F.C. – On July 9, 2010 "The Rooks" became a member-owned club with six founder members of the new Rooks125 group forming the inaugural Board of the new Lewes Community Football Club ownership body. In April 2011, the club announced details on how fans will be able to become owners of Lewes FC. From July 2011 shares in the club have been available from £30 per annum. Shareholders are entitled to vote and stand for election to the Board of Directors. The first of these elections took place in October 2011. As of December 2011 the club has over 800 shareholders. In 2011 the club introduced the "Support and Save" scheme whereby shareholders are entitled to discounts from participating local businesses.
- Newark Town F.C.
- Newport (IOW) F.C. – in 2008 ownership of the club was fully transferred to the supporter's trust.
- Portsmouth F.C. – Portsmouth became the largest fan-owned football club in England, after the Pompey Supporters Trust (PST) successfully gained possession of Fratton Park in April 2013.
- Prescot Cables F.C. – The summer of 2005 saw a change in organisation, with a new football committee formed from the Supporter's Club taking over the reins of the club.
- Saffron Walden Town F.C. – On 4 July 2012, members voted to convert the club into a Community Benefit Society.
- Tonbridge Angels F.C.
- Wycombe Wanderers F.C. – On 30 June 2012, the Wycombe Wanderers Supporters Trust formally took over the club. which resulted in financial stabilization and ended a transfer embargo.
- AFC Croydon Athletic – The club was formed by fans of Croydon Athletic F.C. after that team folded in the 2011–12 season.
- AFC Rushden & Diamonds – The club was formed in July 2011 by supporters after Rushden & Diamonds were expelled from the Football Conference and subsequently liquidated. At an open meeting chaired by a supporters group called SaveRDFC, a mandate was agreed upon to create a phoenix club, fully owned and controlled by its supporters.
- AFC Telford United – Fully owned by Telford United Supporters Trust.
- Canterbury City F.C. – Reformed in 2007, they are the first football club formed as a community interest company. Under the club's constitution, membership "is open to all" and includes the right to vote in the election of "key members of the board."
- Chester F.C. – Phoenix club formed in 2010 and owned by City Fans United after Chester City F.C. wound up
- Darlington 1883 – The club was to be initially 10% owned by 1883 Community Interest Company (1883 CIC), and for 1883 CIC's shareholding to increase as additional donations were received. The club's constitution states that no person may own more than 15% of the club; however, entities such as charities, community amateur sports clubs, industrial and provident societies, community interest companies or other not-for-profit organisations may be able to acquire greater than 15% of the club. (Conditions for 15%+ ownership include the objective of community ownership.).
- Fisher F.C. – The club was formed in 2009 by members of the 'Fisher Supporters Trust' when Fisher Athletic Football Club was wound up in the High Court due to financial problems and closed down.
- Hinckley AFC - Replaced Hinckley United formed by fans in 2014.
- Runcorn Linnets F.C. – The club is run by a trust, which is an Industrial and Provident Society, and is registered with the Financial Services Authority.
- Scarborough Athletic F.C. – Following the liquidation of Scarborough, Scarborough Athletic was founded as a continuation or rebirth of the previous club by a supporters' trust named The Seadog Trust. They took on the same red kit, nickname, motto and official club logo from the original club.
- AFC Liverpool – Cooperative. Formed as a protest against high ticket prices in the Premier League.
- AFC Wimbledon – Fully owned by The Dons Trust, a Supporters' Trust., formed as a breakaway club in the surrounding controversy of the Relocation of Wimbledon F.C. to Milton Keynes.
- F.C. United of Manchester – Owned by a Community Benefit Society. One member, one vote basis. Formed by disaffected Manchester United fans.
- Enfield Town F.C. – The club was founded on 23 June 2001 by the Enfield Supporters' Trust after Trust members considered that the regime in charge of Enfield FC no longer had the interests of the club at heart and lacked sufficient will to bring about the return of the club to its home town, having left Southbury Road in 1999. This followed the chairman of Enfield FC withdrawing from an outline agreement with the Supporters' Trust which would have seen the Trust take over the running of a debt-free club and receiving £100,000 from money from the sale of Southbury Road which was held in an escrow account by Enfield Council. The balance of over £600,000 would have been paid to the chairman.
- 1874 Northwich F.C. – The club was founded on 15 November 2012 following a vote by former Northwich Victoria supporters, who were members of the Northwich Victoria Supporters Trust. They voted almost unanimously, 141 to 4, in favour of breaking away from the club they supported and forming a new team in their town. The club is fully owned by its supporters, and is run by a democratically-elected board.
Minority Supporter Owned
- Bromsgrove Sporting F.C. – Founded in 2009 as a supporters consortium with the plan to buy Bromsgrove Rovers and take them out of administration. When another owner was found for Rovers it was decided to create a new club instead. The Bromsgrove Sporting Supporters' Society, a registered community benefit society, owned 30% of the club as of January 2014. Three supporters serve on the club's board of directors.
- Cambridge City F.C. – As of September 2011, the Cambridge City Supporters' Trust (CCST) owned 10% (a minority) of the club. According to the CCST secretary, CCST now only has appointment power for one director position.
- Carlisle United F.C. – The United Trust (also known as the Carlisle United Official Supporters' Club) owns a 25.4% stake in the club. At least one elected member of the trust sits on the board of the club.
- Chesham United F.C. – As of the 2014/15 season, Chesham United Supporters' Trust (CUST) held only a 2.69% shareholding in the club, and has "no direct responsibility for running the parent club." CUST had previously acquired at least 43.25% ownership of the club as of September 2011. CUST's previously-stated ambition was to earn no more than 49.9% of the club, "a safeguard so that no one party has an overall majority stake in the club".
- Hereford F.C. – The club's majority owner is a group of four benefactors (the Jon Hale group). The Hereford United Supporters Trust is currently a minority owner, although it aims to "own an equal 50% stake" through future fundraising.
Former Supporter Owned
- Brentford F.C. – Bees United (the Brentford FC Supporters Trust) own 60.3% of the shares of Brentford FC; Matthew Benham, himself a fan, owns 30.7% of the shares of Brentford FC; others own 9.0% of the shares of Brentford FC. The Supporters Trust eventually sold a controlling share of the club to a private investor.
- Scarborough Town F.C. – This former club was run on a democratic basis by a management committee. Membership was open to everyone by payment of an annual fee. All adult members had an equal vote and were encouraged to use this vote at every AGM and EGM. The club eventually folded.
- Stockport County F.C. was purchased in 2005 by the Stockport County Supporters' Co-operative but was sold to an investment group in 2009 after near-bankruptcy. A long-term goal of the Supporters' Co-Operative is to buy the ground and to buy back the club.
In Germany a majority control by a single entity (person, or company) is not permitted by the league, and is the German law for clubs. The law suggests a registered club should have minimum 7 members. The league requires that either a club, or a limited company which is controlled by a club with 50% + 1 vote can get a license to participate in the German first or second league. In the lower leagues, it is required to be a club.
- Aris Thessaloniki F.C., between 2006 and 2014 that club was relegated for the third time in its history to second division and went bankrupt
- Panathinaikos F.C. – The Vardinoyiannis family agreed in 2012 to transfer its 54.75% stake in the Athens club to the "Panathinaikos Alliance" group. Each member will have one vote in decision-making procedures, regardless of how many shares each individual holds.
- Pusamania Borneo F.C. – Pusamania Borneo FC was formed in 2014 by a group of Putra Samarinda supporters, the "Pusamania," who are unhappy with Putra Samarinda's lack of achievements for the past few years. With the financial backing of Nabil Husein of Pusamalaya, the Malaysian branch of Pusamania, Pusamania Borneo FC rose in the ashes of the financially distressed Perseba Super Bangkalan, moving the East Java club to Samarinda and re-branding the team. The team is now playing in the 2014 Liga Indonesia Premier Division, and is aiming for the Indonesia Super League, a goal that they've achieved by winning the 2014 Liga Indonesia Premier Division.
- Athlone Town
- Cork City
- Derry City
- Drogheda United
- Finn Harps
- Galway United
- Shamrock Rovers
- Sligo Rovers
- Hapoel Katamon Jerusalem – The club conceived and founded in 2007 by Hapoel Jerusalem fans unhappy with the team's management. The club currently plays in Liga Leumit (the second tier in Israel) and is based at Teddy Stadium in Jerusalem. At its founding, Hapoel Katamon Jerusalem became the first fan-owned football club in Israel. The fans still aim to own the original Hapoel Jerusalem, making it fan-owned and thus, saving it from its current owner.
- F.C. Haifa (Hapoel Rubi Haifa) – The club was founded in 2014 by Hapoel Haifa fans, after years of protesting against the team's management. The club is operated by the fans' association called "Ir HaPoalim" (city of workers). The club entered the Israeli football league system at its lowest level, liga Gimel in 2014 and promoted to liga bet at the end of 2014/5 season.
- A.S. Nordia Jerusalem – The club was founded in 2014 by Beitar Jerusalem fans, in protest against the racist tones of other Beitar fans in the previous years. The club entered the Israeli football league system at its lowest level, liga Gimel in 2014.
- Fujieda MYFC – funded by online subscribers and is the first of its kind in Japan.
- Yokohama F.C. – The club was formed in 1999, following the merger of the city's two J. League clubs, Yokohama Flügels and Yokohama Marinos the previous year. Flügels supporters, whose club was essentially dissolved, rejected the suggestion that they should start supporting Marinos, their crosstown rivals. Instead, with money raised through donations from the general public and an affiliation with IMG, the talent management company, the former Flügels supporters founded the Yokohama Fulie Sports Club. Following the socio model used by FC Barcelona, the Fulie Sports Club created Yokohama F.C., the first professional sports team in Japan owned and operated by its supporters.
- Jeanne d'Arc FC – At the end of the 2006/07 season, a group of Stade Malien supporters broke away to form their own football club, taking the "Jeanne d'Arc" name with them. The name is a reference to one of two defunct clubs which combined to form Stade Malien, Jeanne d'Arc du Soudan (founded 1938) in 1960. In late 2007 this group formed Jeanne d'Arc FC Bamako, which competed in lower division football during the 2007/08 season.
- Górnik 1979 Łęczna – a club founded in 2011 by Górnik Łęczna fans who were unhappy with the name change to GKS Bogdanka. The club eventually changed its name back in 2013 but the fan owned counterpart has continued to operate in amateur football leagues. On 22 August 2014 the club withdrew from all competitions and ceased to operate, the reason cited were the lack of funds and the fact that the original Górnik Łęczna team went to back to its original name scrapping the GKS Bogdanka name.
- Hutnik Nowa Huta – Hutnik Kraków fans who were unhappy with the club management decided to take the club into their own hands and try to restore the clubs former glory, after the team was dissolved due to its debts. It was refounded as Hutnik Nowa Huta in 2010 and was admitted to the fifth tier.
- KKS Wiara Lecha – club founded by Lech Poznań supporters in 2011. Only active supporters can play in the team and they have to have made a contribution to the supporter scene in order to be admitted to the squad.
- KSF Zielona Góra – football club founded by fans of speedway team Falubaz Zielona Góra.
- TMRF Widzew – club created by Widzew Łódź fanatics. The club was created because fans of the original Widzew have been in a long conflict with the club board. Only Widzew supporters can play in the team.
- Portimonense S.C. – fully owned and operated by its supporters
- F.C. Arges 1953 – formed in 2013, phoenix club of FC Argeș Pitești
- SS Politehnica Timișoara – an amateur phoenix club formed after the dissolution of FC Politehnica Timișoara. ACS Recaș was moved to Timișoara and was renamed ACS Poli Timișoara but the fans decided to create and support an amateur team, stating that ACS Poli Timișoara is a fraud and a political maneuver.
- FC Vaslui 2002 – formed in 2014 after dissolution of FC Vaslui in 2014
- LSS Voinţa Sibiu – formed in 2012 as a phoenix club of CSU Voinţa Sibiu
- Heart of Midlothian F.C. - In 2014, when the club were in administration, the Edinburgh club was bought over by Ann Budge. As part of the terms of her takeover, Budge agreed to hand the club over to the fan group, Foundation of Hearts, over a five-year period in exchange for the fans' generosity while the club was in administration. The 2014/15 away strip featured Foundation of Hearts as its chief sponsor, and the 2015/16 third strip will feature the names of 8000 supporters who donate to the foundation.
- FC Barcelona
- Athletic Bilbao
- UC Ceares
- SD Logroñés
- Real Madrid CF
- CAP Ciudad de Murcia
- CA Osasuna
- CD Palencia Balompié
- SD Eibar
- Unionistas de Salamanca CF
- Xerez Deportivo FC
All sports clubs in Sweden are owned by its members. The Swedish Sports Confederation allows clubs to create limited companies together with investors as long as the club controls a majority of the votes.
Almost all sports clubs in Turkey are owned by its members.
- Nashville FC
- Seattle Sounders FC 2 – reserve team of Seattle Sounders FC, 20 percent owned by non-profit Sounders Community Trust
- San Francisco City FC
- Club Atlético Peñarol
- Club Nacional de Football
- Defensor Sporting Club
- Club Atlético River Plate
- Liverpool Fútbol Club
- Montevideo Wanderers Fútbol Club
- Centro Atlético Fénix
- Club Atlético Juventud de Las Piedras
- Racing Club de Montevideo
- Club Atlético Cerro
- Danubio Fútbol Club
- Merthyr Town F.C. – a phoenix club founded by the fans of the liquidated Merthyr Tydfil F.C. in 2010.
- Newport County A.F.C. – taken over by fans in 2015
- Swansea City – Supporters trust is the 3rd largest shareholder, and the fans currently own 21% of the club.
- Wrexham AFC – In September 2011, the Wrexham Supporters Trust took over the day-to-day running of the club just a month after fans raised £127,000 to pay a bond to the Football Conference to prevent the club from being expelled from the league. On 12 December 2011, the WST's ownership of the club was finally ratified.
Australian Rules football
- North Melbourne
- St Kilda
- Western Bulldogs}
- Auburn Doubledays
- Bethesda Big Train
- Burlington Bees
- Rochester Red Wings
- Rockville Express
- Silver Spring–Takoma Thunderbolts
- Syracuse Chiefs
- Toledo Mud Hens
- Vermont Mountaineers
- Wisconsin Timber Rattlers
- Hapoel Haifa B.C. – In the 2011/12 season, the fans re-formed the club.
- Hapoel Tel Aviv B.C.
- Trefl Sopot
- Virtus Pallacanestro Bologna
- Kitchener Rangers (Ontario Hockey League)
- Lethbridge Hurricanes (Western Hockey League)
- Moose Jaw Warriors (Western Hockey League)
- Prince Albert Raiders (Western Hockey League)
- Swift Current Broncos (Western Hockey League)
- Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks
- Parramatta Eels
- Penrith Panthers
- St. George Illawarra Dragons
- Sydney Roosters
- Wests Tigers
- "Season tickets will mean ownership share in Highlanders". Victoria Times-Colonist. 2011-11-05. Retrieved 2011-11-07.
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- Wycombe Wanderers Trust complete club takeover
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- Supporters' Direct newsletter Issue 4, September 2001, p7
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- Satzung der Bundesliga, §8.
- BGB, Kapitel 2, Eingetragene Vereine (e.V.)
- Satzung Fussballverband der Stadt Leipzig, Statute of the Leipzig Football Association.
- "Fans secure ownership of Panathinaikos". Soccerex. Retrieved 19 July 2012.
- "FOKUS: Minim Prestasi, Putra Samarinda Ditinggal Pusamania". 19 May 2014. Retrieved 20 May 2014.
- Hapoel Katamon Jerusalem – Who Are We katamon.co.il (Hebrew)
- Who Are We hapoalim-city.com (Hebrew)
- Nordia – Who Are We betarnordia.co.il (Hebrew)
- "Aquilotto Cavese Launched". Supporters Direct. 2011-11-07. Retrieved 2011-11-07.
- "Sport in Sweden" (PDF). Swedish Sports Confederation. p. 11. Retrieved 24 October 2015.
- Barker, Matthew (25 February 2015). "Fan-owned Nashville FC under threat from US franchise: Club ownership model a rarity among US sports teams". wsc.co.uk (When Saturday Comes). Archived from the original on 25 February 2015. Retrieved 5 March 2015.
- "ACQUISIZIONE VIRTUS". Virtus.it (in Italian). 2013-07-07. Retrieved 2012-07-29.
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- Sask. Roughriders (2013-11-24). "SHARES | Saskatchewan Roughriders". Riderville.com. Retrieved 2013-12-23.