Often Partisan

Sale of BCFC draws closer

The Birmingham Mail have reported on Thursday evening that the takeover saga at Blues was coming to a close with BIH ready to name a preferred bidder for the club after board meetings this week.

The identity of the winning bidder is not yet known, although it is reported that there have been up to five consortiums interested in bidding for the club. No news has been forthcoming from St Andrews or from the directors of BIH as due to stock exchange rules they have to make an announcement first to the HKSE.

Panos Pavlakis returned to HK ostensibly to attend the board meeting earlier this week having spent most of 2014 in Birmingham. With bids having been solicited by Peter Pannu, Panos and BIHL vice-chairman Victor Ma Shui-cheong, the board would have needed to come to a consensus over which bid to pick as a preferred bidder.

Sources close to this website indicate that at least one of the British bidders will be disappointed, having grown frustrated with the length of time that negotiations had taken and backed off. It is understood they are not out of the picture completely but would need the deal with the preferred bidder to break down prior to coming back to the table.

As it stands until an announcement is made to the stock exchange none of this is official, but I would assume that announcement now has to be very close – if not on Friday then definitely within the next few days. That being said, I think it’s important that people realise that the announcement will be more than likely to confirm a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with a preferred bidder with a set period of exclusivity for the terms of the deal to be thrashed out and agreed; in other words the club won’t be announced as sold in the announcement but it will be further down the path to the sale than it has been before.

Furthermore, I think it’s also important to emphasise the necessity that the sale has to be done in tranches; HKSE will not allow BIH to retain its listing and sell BCFC in one fell swoop and as the listing itself is worth anything up to HK$500Million (£38.5million) BIH will not do anything that will harm its share being traded on the main board of the stock exchange. However, I would expect any new consortium to have a watertight legal agreement over the level of control they will have of the club from the beginning and the timescale to complete the purchase of the club in full.

As and when an announcement is made to the stock exchange I will endeavour to update this website as quickly as possible.

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70 Responses to “Sale of BCFC draws closer”

  • Chris W says:

    For the first time Dan I think the BM have beat you with the news, however, your recap on the situation is by far the better synopsis.
    We have heard of these Memorandum of understanding before and look what happened.
    As you say hopefully whoever the new owner is they will dot all the I’s and cross all the T’s very thoroughly.
    We now wait for the HKSE to confirm anything before we start to feel excited.
    KRO+DNM

    • Chas says:

      Doesn’t really matter for us who is first with the News as I get my updates from here anyway, I rarely look at the Mail and certainly don’t buy it, but one of my neighbours has started bring it over to me when he has read it , for some reason. It takes about 5 mins to glean the real News from it.

      • Kazakblue says:

        Same as reading it on the internet here, takes all of 2 minutes, crap read since the mirror group took over, oh for the days long gone of the Argos on a Saturday night.

        • grumpy old git says:

          Kazakblue, couldn’t agree more, the paper hasn’t been the same since the mirror group takeover and I’m an ex-employee of the newspaper! I started as a copy runner for The Sports Argus in 1976 and had the privilege of interacting with some superb journalists, Leon Hickman, the late Ray Matts and Neil Harman to name but a few. It was a joy to be part of The Argus team and was very disappointed when they decided to stop publishing it – the Argus was a product to be proud of. The only silver lining is the superb journalism delivered by Colin Tattum and he’s a Bluenose too!!

          • Tony says:

            How many of you knew that blues forbade a journo from the ground after he described us as Brummie bashers.
            That man was Desmond Hacket and he worked for the daily Express

          • Kazakblue says:

            Grumpy,
            Do you remember Dennis Shaw I think his name was, always a Bluenose, and believe he eventually joined Blues in some capacity.

          • grumpy old git says:

            Kazakblue,
            Yes, his name was Dennis Shaw, another fine journalist who worked at The Argus at the time. The memory’s fading a bit therefore I can’t recall if he went to work at St. Andrew’s, however I definitely remember a man who was an advertisement representative for the Mail who went to work for Blues under the Kumars’ regime and he became so disillusioned with how the club was run financially that he resigned.- and that guy was another Bluenose. Unfair to mention his name but he knows who he is

          • Eric says:

            I LOVED the Argus

        • Chris W says:

          How I use to love the Sports Argus too Kazakblue, use to amaze me as a young kid how we could buy it on the way home from the match.

          KRO+DNM

          • Kazakblue says:

            Chris,

            How did they get it onto the street and into newsagents so quickly?

          • Chas says:

            Printed at Half time,Kaza , and sent to Newsagents a 6ish.. We played away once and I asked a Newsagents where we were if they had a Sportspaper just after 6, he thought I was mad.:-) Not many places got their Paper so early. But for you youngsters, the Argus used to be Printed by The Evening Despatch and I am almost sure that the Mails Sports paper was called ‘The Blue Mail’. When the Mail took over the Despatch (about 1965) they used the Argus as their Sports paper. I may be wrong.

          • OftenPartisan says:

            Once again, Chas, no replying to you specificially you were just the easiest comment to reply to.

            Paul VOR and Tony are both blacklisted for a week until they can grow up. Others are on the verge. I will not stand for it any more.

          • Chas says:

            No worries Dan.

          • Chris W says:

            There was an early edition that was at the ground for the final whistle and the match reports were in the later edition.
            It was still an achievement considering everything was done over the phone and hand typed….
            No mobile phones, lap tops or computers, The Evening mail vans shooting out the Mail car park and delivering all round Birmingham.
            KRO+DNM

        • AussieBlue says:

          Used to love the Argus! Pink wasn’t it?

          • Kazakblue says:

            Certainly was AussieBlue, full of relevant information as well, if I remember, even a section every week from the Captains of all midland clubs, maybe someone else could confirm that.

          • grumpy old git says:

            Kazakblue, I can confirm that there were pieces written every week from players although I’m not sure if they were always Captain of the team. I especially remember reading Brian Robert’s contributions when he was at St. Andrew’s – his dry sense of humour used in his reports justified the price of The Argus alone, although as an employee I got my paper for free!!.

          • Chris W says:

            Each of the big six teams had their own page with each club captain giving an insight to what was going on.

            The supporters felt part of their own club page.

            KRO+DNM

          • grumpy old git says:

            AussieBlue,
            Yes, The Argus was printed on pink paper, when I worked there I was informed that using pink paper was less expensive than using white.

          • AussieBlue says:

            Grumpy, you could be right it was cheaper. I knew a mate in the paper business and he was forever trying to offload cheap pink newsprint. Said the mill had to make too much for just the Financial Times so always had a few tons left over. Could also be due to the pink dye hiding imperfections and therefore cheaper pulp could be used. I too was always impressed how quickly they got the results and reports in print on a Saturday. Used to queue up for it!

      • Chris W says:

        Living in Nottingham I don’t get the Mail either.
        Someone mentioned an article had been written by “Tats” so I looked it up. Dan also added a link to it on here too.
        I only believe what Dan puts up, A) because he prints it in simple terms, or breaks it down and B) he has contacts with inside knowledge in Hong Kong who are more reliable to most of the BM’s speculators.
        KRO+DNM

  • Kazakblue says:

    It will certainly be a relief if it is a genuine company with it’s own management structure and several committed millions of pounds to invest, and not just a front company that is again being controlled from Hong Kong and Stanley Jail.
    I for one will wait for Dan to do his usual comprehensive research and give us his unbiased views on who is involved and what their plans are for BCFC for the short and long term in terms of investment and commitment.

  • Paul Hodges says:

    Dan… I forgot newspapers do journalism. If I want to find out anything about the Blues, I only use OP. Many thanks for the tireless work you put in.
    KRO-DNM.

    • AussieBlue says:

      Is that Truganini in your pic Paul? Why would that be?

      • Paul Hodges says:

        Correct AussieBlue. It’s a matter of respect for the tribe & the aboriginal nation. As you know, they suffered terribly at the hands of the Brits.
        Respect to you for picking her out… !!!

  • beegeeblueboy says:

    1/
    So one British bidder has backed off because they’re no preferred. That’s business. That’s how it crumbles cookie-wise

    2/
    I’m confused with the term
    ‘Sale’ which would indicated a controlling stake which would put the HKSE listing in jeopardy. If it’s in tranches with the new investors having ‘control’ there will surely need to be approval from HKSE allowing a period of grace for BIH to acquire control of another trading business or lose the listing.

  • AussieBlue says:

    The “Australasian” bidding party is an interesting one eh? If it’s who I think it might be it will be private-equity backed from parties who have delivered excellent returns in the past and therefore can attract the right kind of investment. If I’m right though, the game plan will be:
    Buy > invest > take BCFC back into Premiership> become mid-top level performer > sell at a huge profit > return handsome dividends to the PE partners. 3-5 year strategy.
    Soccer is huge and played by more youngsters than any other sport here but Rugby and AFL still dominate. There is a desire to make Australia a world class soccer playing nation and at club level too. The former head of the ARL now heads up Soccer Australia. And we might surprise in the World Cup!
    Anyway, preferred bidder yet to be announced so we’ll wait and see.
    Western Sydney Wanderers rule! KRO

  • Brian Kenwrick says:

    Just a thought but is it possible that one the bidders could be offering
    a viable business aswell as cash in part exchange for taking over Blues
    so BIHL keep their listing and sell Blues in one go ?

  • Agent McLeish says:

    Don’t be surprised if the preferred bidder turns out to be a relative of CY. BIH are a sham of a ‘company’.

  • Will Viles says:

    Here’s a farfetched thought, but with the Villa and Blues up for sale at the moment – should we get 2 serious investors involved in our clubs – could we be seeing a Utd v City type rivalry between us in the Premier League in the not-too-distant future?

    …well, we can dream.

    • Alex T says:

      Dreams can fast turn into nightmares… my nightmare is that Villa have the good fortune to be brought by Randy Lerner and we get stuffed with Carson Yeung…… Oh wait, that already happend! DOH! ;)
      You can guarantee that if we get brought by some bloke from the middle east, we will have found the worlds only poor arab shiek

  • Art says:

    Hopefully this is the start of a new regime-New owners-New Manager and a New Team!

    Can’t come quick enough!

  • mark says:

    I wait for confirmation from hkse

  • mark says:

    Otherwise we end with alot speculation……

  • mark says:

    Bcfc was right to dis-assocated their ties with mk

  • Paul Carter - Voice of Reason says:

    Beautiful sun shiny day in Birmingham allied to the best news to come out of the club for some time makes me a happy man.

  • Pete says:

    I am sorry. But is it me or has the club starting sending press from ‘anonymous’ Bolton fans saying we are the best and loyalist fans and then there has been a leaked suggestion from the club that never gives any hint of anything happening that a buyer is about to be agreed conveniently timed with season ticket announcements. I for one will look to get my season ticket, but when news is factual and something is happening.

    • Tony says:

      Believe me Pete there are strange happenings within the staff that do not always appear to be in the best interest of BCFC.
      Happenings that do not always reach the ears of the powers that be in HK.

      • Paul Carter - Voice of Reason says:

        Yep they may not reach HK but rest assured Tony knows all about em lol.

        Yeah right.

  • Michael Casey says:

    Thanks for your invaluable work, but the Byzantine entanglements of this process are more tortuous than Game Of Thrones. Send in the Hound!

  • les jones says:

    what scares me is new owners giving Clark money to spend

  • Eric says:

    I am hoping for British owners. The far east people DO NOT communicate well. We will continue to payoff BIH while they perhaps find other sources.

  • steve-0 says:

    “Sources close to this website indicate that at least one of the British bidders will be disappointed”

    Sorry, but isn’t this a given? Anybody who knew there was more than one British bidder could have predicted this news.

  • Richard Granfield says:

    Nothing will be announced before Monday at the earliest, but an interesting fact is that Randy Lerner paid £62.6m for the lot across the City in 2006 and CY paid £80m for us in 2009 meaning we were the bigger club when both clubs were in the Premier League!!

  • mark says:

    So prediction within month oh my clark got some spending to

    • Steve says:

      Do you really think Clark will keep his job ?

      • mark says:

        I am of the the opinion he will, and should be given the opportunity to do so. Who ever is approached should appreciate the circumstances he has worked under. He has shown a lot guts and desire. Yes as a young manager still learning the game he will make the odd mistake or two so what……..as he ever been given a full tool set to play with from day one the answer no……you can only
        beg and steal for so long……..Clark will have learned very quickly from last season….that he needs his only players to monld and blend whether that’s with reinforcement and young kids so be it………kro

        • Small Heath Blue says:

          I hope he is given a chance, but I also hope he takes on an experienced assistant manager. I have no issue with giving him transfer funds, and those that have should look at his record when he had money to spend at Huddersfield.

          • Chas says:

            I understand where you are both coming from and I am torn, but the memory of the Blackburn Team will live with me forever. Just my thoughts, not trying to cause problems.

          • Small Heath Blue says:

            Chas, I understand opinion is divided, and we are all entitled to one, the only thing I don’t like is the personal attacks on the manager. If you want him sacked, that’s a fair one, but no name calling etc, and its usually the one’s that can’t wait to bleat at others if they then get a personal attack in return.

          • Chas says:

            Sorry SHBlue, I think you are mixing me up with someone else, I don’t think I have done any Name Calling.

          • Small Heath Blue says:

            I know you haven’t was just explaining my position, apologies for the confusion

          • Chas says:

            Oh, OK then. I didn’t sleep last night worrying about it . ;-)

          • Small Heath Blue says:

            haha

          • Chris W says:

            I have nothing against his signings, he has proved more than capable at Blues. But, the same at Huddersfield, it is his selections and how he uses them, the “always tinkering” does not bring success, look at Burnley, probably the smallest squad in the league but they played together week in week out.
            On saying that he did bring in some poor transfers with Lovenkrands and Ambrose at Blues.
            I agree he needs a Peter Taylor if he is to be successful.
            KRO+DNM

          • mark says:

            Chris don’t you think those players let themselves? Did they play to their potential!

          • mark says:

            Down meant to say

          • Chris W says:

            I agree with that, but also, if some rumours are to be believed, did they play to the way the manager wanted, or, not want to play for the manager. All is speculation until one of them writes their autobiography I suppose.
            Like many I am torn, should LC be given six months to see what he can do with the tools or should it be a clean swwep under a new regime.
            KRO+DNM

        • Steve says:

          Lack of money or players doesn’t account for playing players out of position or tinkering with the team. He has to go now.Why let him spend money now(if new owners come in) only to sack him a few months later? If we’re not sold,he will keep his job and we will not survive relegation next season.

  • mark says:

    Even Colin t saying we have a bright future….

  • jim says:

    Think Birmingham City at £32m would probably be a better investment than Aston Villa at £200m. A canny owner with a good manager could see City in the PL before too long, and then competing pretty well with Villa.


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