Often Partisan

BIHL Confirm Shortlisted Bidder

Birmingham International Holdings have today confirmed in an announcement to the stock exchange that a bidder has been shortlisted. The bidder has made an offer for a stake in BIHL rather than for the club itself.

The announcement goes on to confirm that the Receivers have also secured up to HK$153million in funding (approx £12.75mil) and £880,000 in cash to “assist  Birmingham City PLC to obtain banking facility in the UK”.

This confirms everything I have been led to believe and have talked about yesterday in the video podcast that EY aren’t looking to sell the club – more they are looking for a new investor in BIHL in order to ease out Carson. The actual terms of the offer are still under negotiation but it may be that they are able to bring in this investment without needing to get it past Carson first – and I suspect it would be much easier to obtain approval from the courts than selling the club outright would be.

The funding is an interesting one. The interest rate (8%) is lower than has previously been attracted but I have no clues as to who the lenders (Trillion Trophy Asia) are – and with the HK version of Companies House website down at the moment it’s difficult to find them (if they are indeed registered in the former colony). Blues have been denied an overdraft from HSBC since they were relegated and I wonder if the removal of Pannu plus this injection of collateral will make the bank change their mind to allow the club to borrow some money short term.

All in all this is positive – something is happening. As I said before, it will be gradual – but gradual and effective is much more pleasing than sudden and under legal challenge.

Edit: One thing that I should mention is that the funding is secured against St Andrew’s – how the ACV in place affects that I am unsure.

Update: 15:00BST May 8

I asked the Receivers for clarification on a couple of matters with respect to the announcement made to the HKSE today.

They have confirmed that is a stake in BIH that they are selling and to quote they “have no intention to sell BCFC at this stage”.

They cannot confirm or deny if the lender “Trillion Trophy Asia” is the same company that has made a bid for a stake in BIHL.

And they have confirmed that the loan within the announcement would be secured against St Andrew’s with the current HSBC charge being repaid.

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117 Responses to “BIHL Confirm Shortlisted Bidder”

  • Jaffa says:

    Good news Dan,just like you predicted.Looks like things are really moving forward.

  • rhees says:

    Interesting Dan like you I feel slowly and steady is best option.
    I hope any investment that a good proportion feeds its way Into the squad
    As another good season would increase the coffers at the club.
    Love to know who these investors are and what there plans are.
    Feel another pod cast needed Dan.

  • Adam True Blue says:

    My only concern at this point is the mention of more funding from Asia, I am perhaps not interpreting this correctly but can not help the feeling of de ja vie! Time will tell. Kro.

  • BigmanSteve0 says:

    So we have waited another month this tiny bit of Info, Trillion Trophy asia ?????who the f are they?
    Dan I think your a bit of a blagger not a blogger ,you with all your so called experts in Hong kong when it’s obvious you know as little as everybody else & stop going on about your book.

  • Blue Tsunami says:

    Encouraging news, on top of account status recently. Seems E&Y are getting to grips with the complex web of BIHL. It will be a major step forward if the UK banks are prepared to release funds too. Looking forward to more news on who the investors are in Asia.
    I assume CY can’t appeal against any of this positive progress?

    • almajir says:

      If they agree a deal they’ll need approval from the court – and I don’t Carson can block that. Think being the operative word, need to see how it plays out.

  • Jaffa says:

    Steve0,where else would you have heard about this bidder.Dan is doing a great job and if you think he’s a blagger then go and read about the vile’s take over.

  • river says:

    bit harsh bigmansteve0.who else gives us this kind of information this fast? not u that’s for sure

  • Mineheadblue says:

    Dan, should we be concerned about the loan being secured against St Andrews?

    • almajir says:

      I’m waiting for the Trust to get back to me on that.

    • chris says:

      imo , of course we should be concerned as it means the ground in effect till this loan is repaid at a whopping 8% is basically owned by a third party and not the club.
      If the club / bihl default on this we lose the ground, i know this is probably a long way down the road and at this moment in time only a distant possibility, but it is there.
      The protection afforded St Andrews doesn’t mean it can’t be sold, it just means the trust / fans get time to raise the money to retain it.

  • Stevie W says:

    As I have said all along Plan A is on track even though I did get the April bit wrong. this is really good news of course as long as the negotiations are successful.

    As for the facilitation it was only a matter of time before St Andrews became a pawn in the game. As for the ACV my understanding is that will kick in if it is intended to be sold.

    • almajir says:

      This isn’t a “hostile takeover” though, this is an investment. I don’t think you were quite right – and it’s potentially still some time away.

      • Tony says:

        What do you call derogatory Daniel? any comment that does not fit into your ridiculous political correct agenda I would have thought the events of yesterday would have put an end to such rubbish.
        Realising long ago this blog , was entirely self serving, iin order to push a book with a subjet matter so tedious only an insomniac would want to read, I am never the less suprised by your attitude.
        It is however your site and you must do as you wish even if that means emersing yourself into the bussom of a bunch of sycophants and alloowing no dissenting voices

      • Stevie W says:

        I have never said anything about a hostile takeover I think you have me confused with someone else.

        Plan A has always been to re invest and plan B has always been to sell the club as an asset.

        I have stood by this for some time. Try reading some of my posts.

  • Tony says:

    God this is like watching paint dry so drawn out and political, especially when the shite from B6 ARE TALKING OF £150 Million for their club, and they will probably be sold before us.
    We dont need anymore Chinese whispers, we need european owners,call me rascist if you like.

    Post edited

    • almajir says:


      Your first and only warning. Don’t use derogratory or racist comments on this site if you want to comment here – I will have no hesitation in banning you.


  • Lichfield blue says:

    Is it fair to say that this investment isn’t linked to the preferred bidder?

    • almajir says:

      It could be, we don’t know.

      • chris says:

        as Dan says it might be.
        someone may want to buy the club so puts this money into the bihl coffers to part purchase an interest in bihl.
        this way by securing the ground thay have an asset to protect their investment if another bidder steps in and buys the club.
        The holder of the ground could then ask the new owners to pay back the loan in exchange for the ground.
        i can’t blame anyone for protecting their loan if in the event they fail to become the future major shareholder / owner of bihl

  • DoctorD says:

    Dan – when the statement says:

    “Out of the seven indicative non-binding offers the Receivers have received and assessed, an offer from one of the potential offerors expressing its interests in the shareholding of the Company has been shortlisted”

    Do you think this was the only bid to want to buy a stake in BIHL or that there was more than one, and this was the best. The sentence seems a bit unclear to me.

  • Mitchell says:

    It all sounds good. However, call me complacent if you like,but if we can go a full season next term without the words “Administration” or “Points deduction’ then I will be more than happy. I need a quiet period of stress less Blues!

  • Neil says:

    Any body found out about Trillion Trophy I google but nothing ?.

  • Terry-fied says:

    Hi Dan, thanks for info. I agree slow and sure, giving little chance to sink the ship on the rocks. Lets hope some of the money does filter through, a good team pool, possible play off’s = sound return on investment. Hope H.K. see it that way. KRO

  • Tony E says:

    I really hope that the new investors in BIH have no interest in BCFC, have sufficient funds to invest in other companies which will in turn maintain their HKSE listing, enabling them to sell the club.

  • Sean Thomas says:

    I am no stranger to offering criticism to you Dan, I have found you always respond regardless. If there is a debatable item then it should be debated, the same as if someone disagrees with you. It would be worth nothing if you could not air your honest views. I think all in all you do a good job and I like reading your blog. Now you want expecting that was you ?

  • Bluenose1 says:

    Trillion trophy Asia sounds a bit dodgy to me plus why would anyone with a bit of sense buy into that company with the bad reputation they have sorry but I just don’t see it has good news just more silly names and dodgy people IMO how long has this thing been going on its ridiculous other clubs get sold in no time ours takes years and years and we are still don’t know if or who are going to buy us crazy.

    • almajir says:

      Other clubs take years too fella.

      The mob from across the expressway have been up for sale for a year plus. They’re not sold yet… yes someone is interested but the deal is far from done.

  • duchess says:

    Dan… Do you think, as I do, this may be a hedge your bets bid by E&Ys preferred bidder and a potential full controller? i.e. how much would it take to get back to the premier league where 150M quid awaits then we can move to a full takeover?

    If I were an investor offering up front cash (£13M plus an £800k overdraft which is a huge investment when you think about it) then it would be an excellent bit of business if Blues got promoted next year!

    If Rowett saw half that money he would build an untouchable team!

    This all seems to be part of some big plan to me…. I think the next two years are going to be very exciting for Blues!

  • BND says:

    So now we have to put up St Andrews to raise money and some people think that is a good idea?
    I am pessimistic about the whole situation. The club needs to be sold outright. More Chinese investment
    doesn’t fill me with any hope of a long term solution. This could easily go pear shaped and we could end up with no ground. BIHL have no other business interests other than the Blues. Do you really think that an investor would want to buy a stake in a business with only one asset with the long term plan to offload the asset so they could invest in other assets? It’s ludicrous. Blues are the target through BIHL.
    These investors want the club not BIHL. This is the back door way of achieving that. To what ends who knows. More smoke and mirrors in front of us I fear.KRO

    • almajir says:


      Actually disagree. They might just want the listing. Buy a stake in BIH, put their own business into it, flog the club. Makes sense to me…

      • WalmleySteve says:

        If it was the case that the investor wanted the listing and not the club (and given that EY have confirmed to you that the club itself is not for sale), why would these investors have been shown around St Andrews and the training ground?

        • almajir says:

          They weren’t.

          I’ve since found out that it wasn’t investors that were shown around – it was accountants, I’m guessing apprising the value…

    • Bluenose1 says:

      I agree with you BND the only way blues will progress is when we are finally rid of these people.

  • Dave Mann says:

    I don’t care where new investment comes from because that’s the way of the world now in general never mind football .. Spend some money on 5/6 better quality players this summer to go with what we’ve already got including fabbrini , Tesche and Kiernan and ime buzzing because for someone who’s been to 36 of the 46 league games this Season and all cup games ime telling you now that we can definetley push for the playoffs big time and ime sticking with that prediction .. 5th next season , there you go my cards are on the table but only if what I said above happens !! Kro

  • rhees says:

    Dan you say ey have announced they have also sourced 12 mill is this separate to any investment?

    • chris says:

      there is no investment and £12 million, there is a offer and £12 million loan and my presumption is the loan is part of this offer.
      they seem to offering part of the purchase price for BIHL up front with the ground the security for this loan.

  • rhees says:

    Its all very confusing

  • Bluenose1 says:

    People keep saying with decent investment blues can do this & that where is this investment going to come from it’s not going to happen the only way Gary Rowett is going to get money to spend is by selling grey. I said this the other day Gary Rowett is a very ambitious manager & he will only put up with this rubbish for so long just can’t see how this is good news all it’s doing is prolonging the agony we have had to endure for years.

    • Dave Mann says:

      Bluenose 1 , if Demari Gray gets sold then so be it .. He’s overrated like Redmond , butland , adeyemi .. £5 million I would take now and if we can use that for players then bring it on … Remember what Dan said .. No money goes to Hong Kong!! Kro

      • Bluenose1 says:

        Dave I never said anything about money going to Hong Kong though I agree with you about Gray he is overrated. What I’m saying is Gary Rowett might get some of it he’s not going to get much Though something is better than nothing but he’s only going to put up with that for so long. He will get fed up with the situation because it’s going to hold him back we need a clean break from these people ASAP.

      • StaffsBlue says:

        There will be savings made on outgoing players whose contracts are up, or are surplus to requirements. Plus a good £6m+, plus add ons for Gray if he does go. We ain’t talking megabucks, just invest back into the squad a fair proportion of what we make from all that, we should be able to bring in 3, 4, 5 better quality players and be geared for a tilt at the sharp end of the table.

        • Matt says:

          He did have a low point after the Bournemouth bids, maybe the pressure of a 5m price tag. When Dimmi played well however, Blues were a much hotter prospect. One great player is a lot more effective than 3/4 average players and at 18 as well. Keep him and build a team around a player that only comes round every so often. I feel Gareth Bale is a prime example of this, of course at a greater scale at Spurs.

      • Shirley Blue says:

        Gray is not overrated. He is 18 yrs old and this was his first year of being in the first team ffs. He is already better than Redmond. With experience and building up strength as he gets older he will get better naturally and he has got what can’t be taught -raw pace. He will be a top Premier League player within three years and an England international within five. We have got an absolute diamond on our hands and I hope he signs a new contract. He might not stay with us long term but in a couple of years he will be worth serious money.

        • StaffsBlue says:

          I’m really not sure about Gray staying or not, I think it’s 50/50. The contract has been on the table for quite a while now. Are they really haggling over a grand or two… or is the player keeping his options open in case a Prem club makes a bid? I’d be (pleasantly) surprised if he turned down the chance of moving up to the prem.

        • RichardM says:

          I hope Gray doesn’t listen to his agent and makes the right decision. He needs to be playing regular first team football becuase he’s not the finished article yet. To be honest I can’t see him breaking into the Bournemouth squad at the moment let alone anywhere else. A season as a bit part player will not help his development – look at examples like Scott Sinclair and Adam Johnson who sacrificed at least two years of their careers signing for Man City and are now desperately tyring to make up for lost time.

  • Lee says:

    The fact that the loan is secured against the ground is a big mistake in my eyes. If the worst happened and we defaulted on a payment, St Andrews could be sold off to the highest bidder. The ACV means the fans have 6 months to find enough cash (the market value of the ground) to offer for the asset, but that offer doesn’t have to be accepted by the new owner. As with all property it would be sold to the highest bidder and as far as I can tell, the ACV is almost pointless. I hope I’m missing something obvious and not being too pessimistic and if so, please enlighten me.

  • Ian Reddington says:

    Could you please explain how Carson would be eased out by new investment

  • saltashblues says:

    Thanks for all your hard work it is appreciated Dan, thank you.

  • paulblues says:

    Dan your a diamond………………excellent as always !

  • Eric says:

    I am really concerned that St Andrews is owned by unknown HK people. I, like most Bluenoses, am fed up with this type of foreign ownership.

  • The Francis Fake says:

    I think this announcement is good news as it will keep BCFC afloat for another year. We know that the club hasn’t got the necessary cash resources and therefore the only way that E&Y can secure funds going forward would be either to allow any saleable players to be sold or to put into place a sensible banking facility for the club to compete whilst a sale is being pursued. They also are securing the clubs finances to keep the FL onside. It appears that Trillion Trophy Asia are stumping up cash which is held in HK that is used as cash collateral to get a UK based bank to provide BCFC with probably an overdraft. The reality is that Blues do need to borrow more in order be competitive whether takeover goes through or not. Fortunately the one positive aspect of the overall situation is that Blues is not burdened with large debts. Our problems are really related to CY’s personal situation and ambitions not a huge debt pile like Portsmouth had to contend with. We need to know ifTrillion Trophy Asia is definitively connected to the entity which has been shortlisted as the preferred offeror. If TTA is connected and then a deal is ultimately falls through then any alternative purchaser would have to pay off the TTA facility as part of the deal which is a sensible arrangement.

  • blue n bad says:

    I have said for months that i doubt our club is going to be sold any time soon. We were led to believe that there were prospective parties interested in buying the club so where are they? Non-existant i suggest because if EY had no interest in selling then any suitors would have been told “no thanks” from the off. All that`s happened is BIH via EY have found a way of borrowing a few quid and fair play for that but don`t hold your breath over the prospect of new ownership. Everything i have posted is just an opinion so don`t shoot me down.Thanks.

    • almajir says:

      Where are they?

      They bid for the club and their bids weren’t deemed good enough.

      • Geoff S says:

        There must have been eight or nine bids reported over the last year or so yet none of them deemed good enough. What sort of owners (who clearly don’t have much money) turn down that many bids? Something doesn’t add up.

        • atko says:

          Don’t forget that BIHL need to have a business to remain on the HKSE therefore it might not be that the bids are not good enough but that they simply can’t agree on the terms of the bids. Remember when BIHL stated they were only willing to sell a 24% stake and the remainder would be agreed once they had another business. No new bidders would agree to those terms, bidders want to obtain full control of their investment as soon as a deal is done so it might not be that the bids are not good enough in terms of the offer but more in terms of the fact bidders are not prepared to wait to take over the club & BIHL are not prepared to part with it now. The stumbling block we have always had unfortunately!

      • blue n bad says:

        Sorry Dan but with genuine respect i don`t buy that. Interested bidders must have had an idea of how much the club would cost so i simply can`t see how ALL those bids fell short. And why were they being looked at in the 1st place if EY had no intention of selling? I`ll repeat myself…i do not think BCFC has ever been up for sale barring a ridiculous offer.

        • almajir says:

          Fair enough.

          I know who four of the consortiums were – there were genuine bids made. Maybe they just didn’t want to pay what EY wanted?

  • I don’t believe anything that comes out of hongkong anymore ,it is the hkse job to look after the companies over there through other sources ,and they all are ,in my opinion , for me it seems a way of China,s share holders of having safe shares , every time they make a loss sell a player or to and bring in a couple of freebies to make up the loss , I think of it as no risk shares , if run right with a 120 million pound payout at the end , and then sell it wray then , for a fans interest I say sell it to wray or the like now , and stop all this , as the games should be played on the pitch not in the boardroom , if blues cannot buy the players that’s needed then e y have failed ,

  • Dave Mann says:

    Makes sense .. Keeps it simple. Kro

  • Ginger says:

    Relax chaps E&Y know what they are doing and are in the process of executing a plan. They are trying to sell the club by using investment into BIHL to dilute carsons share and influence thus making the end goal easier when he tries to throw his toys out of the pram further down the line. Trust E&Y and Panos. pannu is outside looking in and Carson will be joining him eventually. Just be patient.

  • Hillfield Blues says:

    Thanks for the update Dan and you called it on the podcast very well. Despite some rather neurotic posts today this is very positive news and a very clever manoeuvre from E&Y. By finding an investor they have weakened CY’s grip by diluting his shares as Ginger rightly states. Wheather TTA’s motives are for the listing (worth 30 million) or to ultimately gain control of the club we don’t know,but it’s a big step foreward as it could potentially release some funds for GR and it compromises CY’s position and he may well be powerless to stop it.

    • chris says:

      not sure this could be used as investment, it would be very risky.
      spending this on wages or players whose value may fall is tantamount to losing the ground from day one.
      surely it should be used to restart trading of bihl shares as E&Y have to put shareholders first not BCFC’s playing budget.

  • Tony says:

    People this is all a very large contrick, Trillion what? sounds lika company from the planet zog

    • Hillfield Blues says:

      Tony,do you think that a company like Ernst and Young would entertain it if it were?

    • almajir says:

      Do you really take that much notice in a name Tony?

      I’d put my money on it being an investment vehicle making the loan – nothing more. Investment vehicles have crazy names sometimes – it means nowt.

      Besides, I doubt very much that a large, established firm of receivers with the credibility that Ernst and Young have would fall for something stupid.

  • paulieboy says:

    Guys lets be totally honest none of us really know anymore than what has officially been reported.
    Yes its very concerning that it is rumoured to be a Chinese group, and yes Yeung and Pannu could well be behind this but there is nothing we can do so lets see what the outcome is if and when it eventually happens.
    Like a lot if us I do not want our great club changing hands with any other Chinese set up but what is worrying based n the report is that the money has been secured against St.Andrews!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    KRO Guys

    • Geoff S says:

      I reckon some jargon-busting needed for that link, Chris.

      I also share the concern others have expressed here re what this latest announcement may mean for the future of St Andrew’s.

  • Richard r says:

    Really worried about St Andrews being secured against the loan. Can we stop this. Rather things stayed as they were

  • tarantini says:

    Whatever you think you’ve risen above, you ain’t fooling anyone. Being humble doesn’t mean you lack class. Take a lesson from Daniel, you ignorant troll.

  • Delboy says:

    This smells very very wrong to me, the deal I mean not your reporting Dan which is appreciated as always. After all we have been through do we really want to risk Stans.

  • BhamCityJulian says:

    It seems to me to be a very risky deal if you are not going to be the owner as part of deal. Is St Andrews worth £13m to a property developer?

    If it is Trillion presumably they had to be named for the loan

  • john williams says:

    as a matter of interest who is paying the E and Y Fees which could at the end be hundreds of thousands of pounds

  • mark says:

    how anyone can think the club will be sold without carson say so in my opinion is absolutely laughable…..

    please with the win at bolton hopefully with a good pre-season, players in and out, the right players in….looking forward to pushing towards the playoffs with confidence…..

    Bye bye Zigic glad you got what you wanted…..another one game wonder in U21 oh please…..

  • rhees says:

    I have read all posts with interest most of which have valued points both for and against.
    Some posts have been childish has to be said.
    I’m unsure if its good news or bad,if money filters down to Garry and we have a season of optimism I feel peoples opinions will support this move.
    If the money dissipates else where then panic will be on the horizon.
    I have to think pannos has had our corner with the appointment of Garry a d supporting him in the acquisition of players he wanted so I feel he will chase these funds for the club.
    It is tl be seen could be long or exciting closed season I think.
    Keep up the good work Dan kro sotv

  • Ginger says:

    E&Y have not been “conned” by anyone, they have gone through all of the hoops needed and have taken their time with everything for a reason. Those worried that Carson or Pannu are in some way involved with this investment are giving them far too much credit, they are not clever enough to pull the wool over E&Y eyes believe me. Only E&Y and a privileged few know the exact powers bestowed on them by the courts so hence a little guesswork but it’s all heading in the right direction and there is a need to be patient as the last thing we need in the future is a raft of legal challenges from yeung in the future. As OP has said don’t put much store in the actual name of the company set up for loan, it won’t be the name of the ultimate investor.

  • Shirley Blue says:

    I see LC and his drinking pal have resigned from Blackpool. Pity he didn’t show the same class when he was with us rather than wait to be sacked and get a nice big payout. I pity the next club who make the mistake of taking those two on.

    • T says:

      Yes SB i had noticed that little detail, I wonder if thats it for him now or will he still seek employment masquerading as a football manager.

  • swissjonny says:

    Tarantini-now that takes me back.I remember him wading into the crowd as someone threw a coin at him.I also remember him jetting off without so much as a good bye!

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