Often Partisan

Adventures in Calling BIHL

As some of you probably know, the Blues Trust have been running a “week of action” this week, urging supporters to contact Birmingham International Holdings to ask polite questions as to what is happening with the accounts, investment and the future.

Due to legal issues and technical problems I can’t upload a recording of the call I made to BIHL this morning, but I thought I’d give you a run down of how it went.

[Receptionist] Birmingham
[Me] Hi there, could I speak to Pauline Wong please?
[Receptionist] One moment
—Hold Music—
[Another female voice] Yes?
[Me] Could I speak to Pauline Wong please?
[Another female voice] who is calling?
[Me] My name is almajir, I’m calling from Birmingham, England
[Another female voice] hold please?
—More Hold Music—
[Guy] Yes?
[Me] Hi, my name is almajir, I’m calling from England
—ring tone—

Judging by what I’ve read on the official forum, it’s not an uncommon theme. I accept that there is a language barrier – English isn’t their first language and I’m a Brummie with a cold so it must be very difficult for them to understand me – but it does seem that they don’t want to talk to anyone from the UK.

I’ve made something like 30 phone calls now over the last few weeks to BIHL, and I’ve been promised a couple of callbacks, been told no one is in the office – basic stalling tactics really – but it appears that they might be rattled now because I’ve never been hung up on. I understand that it’s Chinese culture to be private but I have never asked for more than them to make a statement to tell us what is going on.

So where do we go from here?

I’m going to keep trying this week at least – I don’t expect answers but I hope if enough of us call they’ll get the hint and maybe issue some sort of statement. Words are only so much though – it’s actions that will count and I fear that without some sort of assurances, without the accounts being released and without any further investment, Blues fans will vote with their feet – and it’s difficult to blame them for doing so.

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52 Responses to “Adventures in Calling BIHL”

  • DoctorD says:

    What’s the betting the guy at the end was Carson himself?

  • prewarblue says:

    comment edited

    Sorry guys, made a conscious decision that I’m going to edit out the more obvious stereotyping of Chinese culture.

  • Paul Carter - The Voice Of Reason says:

    Good chance.

    What service does BIH provide or what does it manufacture?

    It is nothing short of a company by name only for whatever reason.

    Fair play to you Al but you’re wasting your time mate not to mention your money ringing China.

    If they wanted to communicate they would have by now.

    • almajir says:

      £5 for 10,000 minutes to call China?

      I’m not wasting that much fella.

      • Paul Carter - The Voice Of Reason says:

        There is software out there that continually dials numbers

      • Blueboy 88 says:

        To be fair if some Chinese speaking bloke with a cold & a thick Kowloon accent…phoned me
        I would have probably hung up too…

        Rather than this scattergun approach wouldn’t it not be more credible if resources were pooled & a Chinese speaking person engaged to have a reasonable , & understandable conversation with the BIHL office ?

  • Daddybluenose says:

    Has anyone tried the ex board members like Stevie-mac and co?

  • shedrocket says:

    Yeh so much for being “family” its a disgrace, if it was a real family social services would have been called months ago.

  • Steven Hodgetts says:

    Its a shame Blues Trust didn’t obtain e mail addresses

  • Daddybluenose says:

    Also can’t wait for the press conference for Clarke appointment wonder if they even be anyone there to ask questions

  • skareggae72 says:

    Shame you couldn`t use a more expensive call & reverse the charges on them,but they would probably only take the money back out of the club by selling more players eg,Redmond to West Ham for a paltry £1m grrrr.

  • Stratty says:

    I’m in Sales living out in the Far East selling mostly to the Chinese, you soon get used to the phone being hung up. If your call is not expected or you are unknown, it is not uncommon for this to happen.

  • Dave says:

    No offence mate but if you in sales in the uk and you call you normally get the phone hung up especially when I’m having my tea…; )

    I’m currently looking at getting a printing firm to do a leaflet that each fan can send to BIH translated into Chinese. Asking the board for answers
    See what happens when a few thousand letters hits there door step

  • John says:

    I am amazed that you expected to get any kind of answer from them. Most civilized governments fail to get honest answers,from China !

  • quokkasskip says:

    Dave, great idea. You should publish the letter online and then the masses that live out of Brum can also sent it. Got to get them to talk and eave.

  • Aussiebrum says:

    At least I did get to speak with someone there – I’ve pasted the details into the official forum for those interested.

  • krotom says:

    Just read PP statement which tells very little that we did not already know. Found parts patronising but nothing unusual there.

    PP states Mutch transfer granted because he was anxious to link with Cardiff manager.
    Mutch says he was shocked by the move.

    Still grateful for my dad taking me to my first match at St Andrews all those years ago 1961 and in the years since then i have had some great memories of success and not so great memories of failure.

    Blues will come through this but it may take some time.


    ps Keep up the good work on the website

  • murph says:

    please please read peter pannus statement on club website, sounds very like i was praying to hear about our beloved club, no nathen going for a million etc, making a profit last year etc, all us fans just want reassurance about the club so at last lets get again behind our football club. murph

  • bcfcdave11 says:

    have you read pannus statement

  • DoctorD says:

    Thanks Mr Pannu for talking to us. I appreciate it.

  • Oldbluenose says:

    Almarjir, mate;, Having read Peter Pannu’s statement on the official BCFC, website,!!. Whilst NOT sufficiently satisfied in total, — I AM slightly more opotmistic than I was before it,!!.

    What is YOUR take on it, Al,?.

    • almajir says:

      I’ll be writing something about it later

      • Oldbluenose says:

        Almarjir mate;, I am counting the min’s — Get your finger out, — Big chuckle,!!.

      • DoctorD says:

        Honestly, it’s not all rosy from PP but at least it’s information — we’ve been crying out for something, anything for weeks.. I’ll let you do your forensic analysis of the statement Almajir, but it’s obvious all’s not hunky dory in China. I’d love to be a fly on the wall there. Who’s betting Pauline Wong is off next?

      • Atahualpa is a BlueNose says:


        Why oh why did PP have to wait so long to make this statement. We’ve all been asking for this and now it would seem that he has relented and give us an insight into what is going on.

        Almajir, can’t wait for you to dissect this multi-faceted statement, because there really is some interesting stuff being said.

        It would appear that CY is ready to do one when something half – decent appears on the horizon. The Vico Hui sentences are very intriguing as well.

        Please do a blog as soon as you can on this.

        It’s getting all very Agatha Christie.

  • KRO21 says:

    Happy that there’s been a statement. Obviously very restricted in what he can/cant say but Re: One aspect of the PP statement (quote) ”One thing i can say is that any new buyer will be following closely the support fans give to the club and the current owners”.

    It seems to me the club are feeling the squeeze on ST sales and PP is trying to play the guilt card. I dont think it’s fair to keep the fans in the dark with complete silence, then to pop your head up and say if you dont give us your money we will have a lesser chance of finding investment. I would like to think potential investors would see the fall in support is due to the recent developments.

  • bcfcdave11 says:

    whilst i agree this statement by pannu are on the whole possitive if you read the full version he also stated that jordan much had a deep desire to go to cardiff and his wish was granted by bcfc implying it was mutch that asked for the move.
    however reading mutchs statement earlier today it was clearly not his idea.
    which for me typifies the whole feeling around the club at the moment you just dont know who to believe
    lets all hope things work out and if hes right there are potential buyers for the club because he just told us there are (unless we frighten them off apparently )

  • Paul Carter - The Voice Of Reason says:

    I believe Jordans version

    • Peckham_Blue says:

      Would you really believe a 20 year old footballer looking to advance his career over Pannu? I wouldn’t. That’s not to say I believe Pannu, but footballers have to be as mercenary as anyone these days and their agents will tell them exactly what to say under any circumstances. I basically don’t believe anyone atm.

    • Agent McLeish says:

      Agree, JM has no reason to tell porkies and no dirty laundry to worry about. PP on the other hand has the wash basket full of smelly pants and socks, some of which he’d like to discard.

  • bcfcdave11 says:

    unfortunatly so do i

  • Blueboy 88 says:

    Communication , Communication, Communication, Peter……..simple..

    I am satisfied enough now that any ST money will stay within BCFC next season..
    With the caveat that PP still raises the prospect of administration , which is a Euphemism for , if I have to sell Butland , or we end up in League One ..Tough..!!
    So I will manage my onfield expectations accordingly…

    Maybe its time to para-phrase Love Utd Hate Glazer for our needs , & begin the campaign to rid ourselves of BIHL while fully supporting the Football Club…

  • Gwynfor says:

    A Cousin of my Daughter in Law works in Hong Kong and when my Son spoke to him the other day about the publicity surrounding Bham City he said you don’t hear anything in the news its very quiet.

  • Paulo says:

    Well, well, well! ..just read Pannu’s statement, and although It hasn’t made me gasp in amazement or go down the pub for a quick pint ..I have to admit I am a little pleased at the fact he has done it.
    I can guess he is a very busy man and what his priorities are, and whereabouts we (the paying fans) stand. The communication is good, but I do feel that he has waited for far too long and decided to put every issue on one page and publish it on the site.
    ..it sounds like something a lot of senior managers do really, they wait for the sh*t to really hit the fan, whilst appearing to do nothing to calm down all the situations that arised because of a total lack of communication, then wrap ot all up in a neat memo and wipe the desk clean and go for a coffee.
    Ok, he might not be on the BIHL board, but I don’t like to be told to relax when I read into his statement a little better, and it does appear that a little bit of washing his hands of a little bit of blame on the whole Mutch sale and Vico Hui resigning, so it’s not really anything he can do!
    ..and as for the old chestnut of no one’s for sale ..except for the right price! That really reassures me!!!!!
    No way am I going to take the blame for negative articles circulating the media putting off potential owners either!! ..cos thats how he’s written it.

    Is PP teflon (ie, sh*t dont stick) or a politician?

  • Gwynfor says:

    Just noticed that Terry Westley is the Youth team coach at Cardiff,the very same man who brought Jordan with him to Blues from Derby. Say no more!!!

  • BhamCityJulian says:

    Vico Hui’s fax machine wasnt on auto answer yesterday, Monday

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