Guangzhou Evergrande Taobao Football Club is a professional Chinese football club that participates in the Chinese Super League under the license of the Chinese Football Association. The team is based in Guangzhou, Guangdong, and their home stadium is the Tianhe Stadium which has a seating capacity of 58,500. Their majority shareholders are the Evergrande Real Estate Group (56.71%) and the e-commerce company Alibaba Group (37.81%) while the rest of the shares are traded in the Chinese OTC system.
They were founded in 1954, and won several second tier titles before they became professional in 1993. Their results improved, leading to a runners-up spot in China’s top tier. Unable to improve upon these results the club went through a period of stagnation and decline before they experienced a brief revival when they won the 2007 second division. In 2009 the club were embroiled in a match-fixing scandal and they were punished with relegation. The Evergrande Real Estate Group decided to purchase the club and pumped significant funds into the team. They immediately won promotion and gained their first top tier title in the 2011 season. The club is the only Chinese football club to win AFC Champions League twice, in 2013 and 2015. The club is also the first Chinese club to participate in the FIFA Club World Cup, making its first appearance in 2013.
According to Forbes, Guangzhou Evergrande is the most valuable football team in China, with a team value of US$282 million and an estimated revenue of US$57 million in 2015. However, the actual figures were total assets CN¥2.009 billion, net assets (equity) CN¥524.9 million, revenue CN¥380.6 million and a net loss of CN¥953.2 million in 2015 financial year (2015 season). It was decreased to CN¥1.273 billion in total assets in 2016, but increased in revenue (to CN¥561 million) and equity (CN¥607 million). The net loss of 2016 season was decreased to CN¥812 million.