Often Partisan

The Long Wait Continues

As rumour of the impending sale of Birmingham City rumbles on, we enter a new week without an announcement to the HKSE from Birmingham International Holdings as to a preferred bidder.

Over the last three days I’ve had a number of people ask me what is happening with Blues as the saga drags on. With there being a complete absence of information we’re left with a maelstrom of gossip, rumour and counter-rumour as to what is actually going on with BIH and BCFC. With this in mind, I thought I would write this piece to put out into the open exactly what I do know.

What I know about the sale for a fact is absolutely nothing. If I was asked as to what I have heard then the answer would be completely different, but it also wouldn’t make sense because I have heard various conflicting stories from people who believe that they have insight into the deal. It’s my belief what those people know for a fact is also minimal – and is based on rumour and tittle-tattle and the only people who do know for sure are the board members of BIH – and they are not telling anyone anything (as they are not allowed to by law).

I will admit to being a cynic but I think that the cynical and sceptical approach works best at this moment in time. I know people have said “this journalist has said this” and “this journalist has said that” but I always wonder as to where they got their information from, what their source’s intentions were in telling them that information and what bias they have; especially when there is a competitive sale going on and it’s possible that bidders and/or other parties could be sabotaging each other’s efforts in an attempt to secure their own team winning.

It’s my firm belief that we will hear a result sooner rather than later; I said last month when asked by some people that I thought we’d know by the end of May – I was sure on Thursday it was imminent but now I’m not so confident. I do not know who has won the bid; I have heard conflicting stories as to who the front-runners are and I’m convinced the new investment will not be British or Chinese-based – but I don’t know that for sure – and I don’t think in honesty anyone else does either.

For those who want to morbidly watch announcements to the HKSE, the link you need is here. Announcements can be made any time up until around 2300 HKT (1600 BST) and the stock number for BIH is 02309. One thing I think we might see is a spike in share trading; maybe even a very short suspension in trading of shares pending an announcement. Share trading in BIH has been very sluggish of late although it looks like a couple of punts were taken on Wednesday and Thursday by speculators – the stock sticker is here.

What it comes down to is the old mantra of having to wait and see and being patient. We’ve waited a long time for the sale to come through and we’re at the final stages now of something happening; rather than continuing to contribute to speculation and worrying as to what might happen it might be best just to sit tight and hope for the best.

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43 Responses to “The Long Wait Continues”

  • Art says:

    The contempt this board has for the clubs supporters ,staff and commercial sponsors is to say the least infuriating.Frankly the board are a disgrace and they should hang their heads in shame.

    • mark says:

      Why art they are following the law…….whether you like it or not……

      • Art says:

        I’m not specifically refering to the sale and I fully understand the disclosure rules.The board rarely communicate and have demonstrated a general lack of interest.PP in particular is partly responsible for the low fan base and fading gate revenue.

        • mark says:

          Art I believe they put statements on bcfc website when they are relevant issues that need addressing….. What more are you hoping for mate…. The day to day running of the club is by our wonderful bcfc staff……..so like Daniel said its down to the individuals whether they proceed with St or decide to pay on the day….. Or not bother at all…..it has simple as that……blh are not going anywhere in the foreseeable future…

    • OftenPartisan says:

      Why?

      Because they are following the rules?

      Art – I hate to say this but they’re doing it right. Their legal duty is to their shareholders, not us.

      • AussieBlue says:

        If I may qualify that; they’ve been dragged kicking and screaming to follow the HKSE laws/rules.

  • mark says:

    I think anyone who thought this quest would be easy with so much money at stake are not living in the really world….why firstly would they sell themselves massively short…….

  • Richard Granfield says:

    The speculation started with an article from Colin Tattum. Only he knows the veracity or otherwise of his information. Or was it journalistic licence?

  • EddieBirmingham says:

    How come we are bound by secrecy and Stock Exchange forbidding us to by law to announce any bidders etc.

    but, when the Vile go up for sale, we all know who’s the new owner before its officially announced and they get on with it with no “(as they are not allowed to by law)” quotes

    • beegeeblueboy says:

      Villa bidder is just speculation. Also I believe that they are a private company not public. They don’t have a stock market listing. I stand corrected if I am wrong though

    • Chas says:

      Different Stock Exchanges, different Rules ?

    • OftenPartisan says:

      1) they’re not listed on the stock exchange

      2) their ownership structure is different

      3) we don’t actually know any bidders. Lots of speculation (same as Blues), no fact.

  • Raymondo says:

    This company’s respect for HK law is apparently in remarkable contrast to CY’s deliberate flouting of it in his money laundering!

  • Blooflame says:

    Vital football reports that a preferred bidder will agree to keep the shares on the HKSE. If true, does it mean the new buyers are bound to be Chinese (and “friends of Carson”)? Are the assets and accounts to be kept “offside” for a further period. It’s about time the Board faced up and come clean. Unless the shares, books and any other dealings are transferred back to where they belong I can only see more of the same and this season is merely a stay of execution.

    • Squatnose says:

      I’ve just read the report and it doesn’t say that at all. It merely states what we already know, simply that BIHL will retain its HKSE listing as that’s more important to them than disposing of BCFC in one go. The shares in the football club will be sold to whoever is the preferred bidder.

      • Blooflame says:

        The shares and the BOOKS must be over here…it’s madness not to. I can’t fathom any reason to effectively keep the finances offside nor for any support whatsoever for this lot

  • Chris W says:

    Hopefully this is not another delay and the secrecy, or lack of development news is purely within the keeping of HKSE rules.
    Not so long ago people were saying the Golds etc sold us down the river and got as much as they could, now I am reading that BIHL are holding out for as much as possible.
    Whoever buys BCFC, in my opinion, are in for a rude awakening as to the extent of the financial problems at BCFC, look at the new Leeds owners comments, they will say it a the Vile too, any excuse not to pump in as much money as needed when they initially take over, even the Golds said the same when they first took over.
    We know something has to give and soon.
    KRO+DNM

    • AussieBlue says:

      Hi Chris – Due diligence should reveal any weasels under the carpet. If the debt situation is real bad….the offer price goes down. If it’s diabolical; there will be no offers unless admin/liquidation takes place. That’s my experience in general business insolvency cases anyway.

      • Chris W says:

        I agree with due diligence, but don’rt forget BIHL have a history of hiding the carpet.
        I’m just being pessimistic and will only believe something when I see it when it comes to BIHL and Hong Kong.
        My heart wants to believe that everything in the garden will soon be rosy, my head keeps telling me there are hidden dangers and more weeds and hard ground to break into.
        I do hope that my heart is right for a change…
        On a cheery note, we are enjoying some fine Aussie sunshine here in the UK, made for a great day for the Help Harry Charity yesterday and here’s hoping the Blue Skies continue over St Ans for a long time to come.
        KRO+DNM

        • AussieBlue says:

          G’Day Chris – nothing wrong with healthy pessimism. Based on past performances by BIHL including being suspended by the HKSE for not lodging accounts; it’s warranted. I’m fascinated by all the ‘will only sell if xyz’ stuff. What about the buyers? ‘Will only buy if a-b-c.’ The longer it goes on the more likely it will become a forced sale imho.
          Nothing like Brum/Warwickshire in the sunshine! All those parks and country inns. Our winter starts in 12 days and it’s already a chilly 26C in Sydney! Yes, I’m being a smart Alec.

          • Chris W says:

            Well Hello, Auss!
            Sorry that’s my posh Brummie….
            All this a-b-c and x-y-z, to me, seems to just add to more problems than it needs, but because of all the other delays in accounts and of course CY’s trial and incarceration also bring HKSE into the equation.
            Nothing is ever simple and straightforward with the Blues, from winning the cup, to this seasons last day, last minute exciting climax, we should have been safe by Christmas if we had turned up for our home games.
            I was in Swansea yesterday on the beach and it was 26C today we have had 24 in Nottingham, where I now live the quiet life, just too hot to mow the lawn so enjoyed a beer and watched the grass grow some more.
            Take it you’ll have a Barbie on the beach with a few Fosters or castlemaines…. Cheers, enjoy.
            KRO+DNM

  • Geoff S says:

    Chris.

    We can’t know for sure but I wonder how much debt Blues may actually really be in.

    • Chris W says:

      That’s my point Geoff, there has been so much secrecy and with so little investment will we ever know the true extent of the status of BCFC? Not to mention where all the money from transfers and parachute payments has gone. PP keeps saying we are debt free, I wonder…
      KRO+DNM

  • RichardM says:

    I wonder if the announcement that the Villa are also up for sale has damaged our cause – could some of the 5 potential buyers be now looking at Villa Park as a more attractive acquisition? Typical bloody Villa…..

  • bluenose08 says:

    whats the saying “good things come to those that wait” I would rather it took time and everything was right now, than have a delay further down the line when 2nd part of takeover commences

  • Roy Smith says:

    You say that you don’t think that the British or Chinese bidders are in the running but according to you only HSBC know anything about the bidders, so therefore you either DO know who the bidders are or are making up the entire article.
    If you do know why haven’t you informed us as it means the HKSE rules have already been broken by someone and the information is in the public domain already?

  • Blueboy88 says:

    How can any buyer be sure they can purchase all the shares in desperate tranches ?
    As anybody can purchase shares in BIHL surely they are not obliged to sell ?

    Also does anybody know how any sale would affect those BCFC shareholders who did not sell to CY at the time of the Gold/Sullivan sale ?

    • AussieBlue says:

      Blueboy – BCFC is an asset of BIHL – the listed (HK) company. If the directors decree and the HKSE agree that the asset can be sold, it will if a buyer agrees to the piecemeal acquisition. It’s not like buying shares in BIHL. As for the BCFC shareholders who hung in there…the value of their shares could go up or down; or they could be made an offer by a new owner. Either way, the law governing that aspect will be UK corporations law, not HK law so will bode better for them in my opinion.

    • beegeeblueboy says:

      The BCFC shareholders who didn’t sell to Grandtop stand to make lot of money when we reach the Champions League

  • Phill McCrackin says:

    Come on, I want some news today!! The silence is deafening!

  • paul says:

    £32m for City must be a better bet than £200m for Villa !!

  • edd77 says:

    So no news then that’s a shock ,I don’t believe there even is bidders sorry for the scepticism but ill believe it when new owner is holding scarf at st Andrews and not until!

  • StevieW says:

    Its amazing the silence is worse than any rumour mongering and the trade of shares is saying diddly squat aswell, almost like there is nothing going on at all.

  • Richard Barron says:

    This is what I am hearing – and this is based on my own research and talking to people in the local media and at the club. All of these bids are genuine, vetted, and concrete. One of these offers WILL BE ACCEPTED – however the British consortium is off the table and so is the Chinese. It has been reiterated a number of times that BIHL HAVE TO SELL Blues – it’s not a case of maybe/maybe not – IT WILL HAPPEN this summer as they do not have the financial means to take us any further. I believe we will hear something soon. I know it is hard as we’ve been here so many times before; but have faith in this – something is going to happen.

    • beegeeblueboy says:

      I believe we are well out of the British one. If was probably local businessmen/Blues fans who wanted to pay rock-bottom because they not got adequate resources. It may even have suited them if we’d gone down because they wouldn’t have to invest so much to create a title-winning team. Such a team would generate similar gates in current division or League 1

    • beegeeblueboy says:

      If you say so Richard B! These things just take time. Factor in HKSE too and there’s ample chances of lots of questions to answered and verified

  • rob simpson says:

    I am so tempted to watch that bloody stock exchange ticker tape! However, I feel an imminent disappointment that we will be sold to some faceless corporation. We need an owner/chairman who actually comes to watch the games and share our joys and sorrows. KRO

  • beegeeblueboy says:

    There is a ‘sleeping’ owner at Spurs – Joe Lewis. Hasn’t done them any harm.


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