Wigan Athletic takeover: IEC confirm deal done

IEC CEO Melvin Yan Min Zhang (centre), flanked by Joe Royle (left) and Darren Royle (right)
IEC CEO Melvin Yan Min Zhang (centre), flanked by Joe Royle (left) and Darren Royle (right)

International Entertainment Corporation are officially the new owners of Wigan Athletic Football Club after formally confirming its acquisition.

Darren Royle will take over as executive chairman, with his dad Joe - the former England striker - being appointed the board of directors along with Thomas Chan.

Latics chief executive Jonathan Jackson retains his position on the board, providing continuity from the Whelan family regime.

“I am extremely proud to become executive chairman of Wigan Athletic Football Club,” said Darren Royle.

“It is a huge honour and responsibility to also follow in the footsteps of Dave Whelan and David Sharpe.

“Nothing is more intimidating yet motivating than a legacy such as the one left in place by the Whelan family.

“And I am determined to make sure my total commitment goes towards helping Wigan Athletic, its staff and fans achieve the dream.”

Melvin Yan Min Zhang, the CEO of IEC, added: said “We are extremely honoured and proud to become the custodians of Wigan Athletic Football Club.

“The football club operations and performance under the leadership of the Whelan family over a long period, together with the traditions and values of the club and its supporters, were major factors in our decision to purchase the club.

“We intend to build on that history and grow Wigan Athletic further to achieve success both on and off the field.”