M
SM

League One

Tangerine dreams of a takeover may be coming true

PA | 2mo
Finance expert provides proof of funds to raise hopes of successful bid for Blackpool.

Football finance specialist Terry Pritchard is the man behind a Paul Stewart-fronted consortium trying to buy Blackpool from current owner Owen Oyston.

The Tangerines have been on the market for more than a year and is currently losing about £2million a season, mainly because a large section of Blackpool's supporters have been boycotting the club since 2016 in an attempt to force 85-year-old Oyston to sell.

The Mirror newspaper reported on Saturday that former England player Stewart, who started his career at Blackpool and still lives in the area, has been approached by a consortium of businessmen to lead their takeover bid, with a "commercial finance firm" providing the funding.

Paul Stewart left Blackpool for Manchester City in 1987 (PA)

Press Association Sport can now reveal that firm is Charter House Corporate Partners, the London-based lending specialist Pritchard set up in 2016.

The 54-year-old has a long track record in football, having helped to finance takeovers at Bolton, Portsmouth and Sheffield Wednesday, as well as working with AFC Wimbledon on their new Plough Lane stadium.

Speaking to Press Association Sport, Pritchard said this particular takeover attempt "is in its infancy" and admitted he has been aware of several previous attempts to buy Blackpool from Oyston.

Blackpool's owner is Owen Oyston, pictured here in the orange jacket (Mike Egerton/PA)

But he said this consortium is "interesting because they have credibility, knowledge of the club and seem to have the ear of Valeri Belokon", the Latvian banker who was Blackpool's co-owner and chairman during the club's rise to the Premier League. They are now in League One.

Belokon is crucial to any solution to Blackpool's problems, as he is still owed £25million by Oyston, following their bitter legal dispute over what happened to the club's Premier League windfall.

Having fallen out with Owen Oyston and his son Karl, the club's ex-chief executive, when he discovered they had paid themselves huge bonuses and salaries after Blackpool's sole season in the top flight in 2010/11, Belokon took the pair to court and won.

Valeri Belokon is still owed money (John Stillwell/PA)

The court decided he was owed £35million in November 2017 and, so far, the Oystons have only paid £10million of that sum, having missed several deadlines for the rest.

Belokon could have asked for a court order to seize Blackpool at almost any point in the last year but has chosen not to until now, as his lawyers have a court date next month to discuss the appointment of a receiver to sell the Oystons' assets.

It is unclear, though, if he will proceed with this course of action, because he would not currently pass the English Football League's Owners' and Directors' Test, owing to a money-laundering and tax evasion conviction he received in Kyrgyzstan in 2017.

Blackpool fans have protested about the ownership of Owen Oyston (Anthony Devlin/PA)

Belokon, who has not responded to PA's attempts to contact him, has always denied those charges, saying the prosecution was politically motivated, but there have been no updates on his attempts to persuade the EFL that his conviction should be ignored.

This has hugely complicated the situation at Blackpool but Pritchard believes there is a way out.

"They are not a lost cause at all – I have seen clubs in far worse financial positions," said Pritchard.

"Blackpool are worth £10-12million and there is no reason why it can't become a good investment, providing you get the gates back up again and you use the stadium and its hotel better, with concerts and other sports events.

"The key is to come up with a package that will give Belokon something up front but also an annual dividend going forward. I think he wants to stay involved with the club but not in a hands-on way and I suspect the EFL would allow that.

"I don't know if the deal will come off, Owen Oyston is still a factor, but I have provided the consortium with proof of funds and they are definitely talking to Belokon."



amp_article_347652 : Database Data restored...  : 
last updated article - 2019-01-23 10:10:31:
html db last update - 2019-03-07 00:50:30 :

ex - 7200 : read : read cache amp html

Click here for more stories about Owen Oyston

Click here for more stories about Blackpool

Share this article now:

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Select and display your favourite team's news and scores in this panel
Premier League Table
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Liverpool34267177205785
2Manchester CityMan City33272486226483
3Tottenham HotspurSpurs332211064343067
4Arsenal33206766402666
5Chelsea34206857362166
6Manchester UnitedMan Utd33197763441964
7Leicester CityLeicester34145154645147
8Wolverhampton WanderersWolves33138124142-147
9Everton34137144644246
10Watford33137134748-146
11West Ham UnitedWest Ham34126164252-1042
12Bournemouth34125174961-1241
13Crystal Palace34116174046-639
14Burnley34116174260-1839
15Newcastle UnitedNewcastle34108163243-1138
16Southampton3399153954-1536
17Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton3396183253-2133
18Cardiff CityCardiff3494213063-3331
RFulham3455243276-4420
RHuddersfield TownHuddersfield3435261967-4814
Scroll for more - Tap for full version

Subscribe to our Newsletter


Transfer Talk Daily
Match previews - twice weekly
Morning Briefing (7am UTC)
UC
Get the latest transfer news, match previews and news direct to your inbox!

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Select and display your favourite team's news and scores in this panel
Premier League Table
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Liverpool34267177205785
2Manchester CityMan City33272486226483
3Tottenham HotspurSpurs332211064343067
4Arsenal33206766402666
5Chelsea34206857362166
6Manchester UnitedMan Utd33197763441964
7Leicester CityLeicester34145154645147
8Wolverhampton WanderersWolves33138124142-147
9Everton34137144644246
10Watford33137134748-146
11West Ham UnitedWest Ham34126164252-1042
12Bournemouth34125174961-1241
13Crystal Palace34116174046-639
14Burnley34116174260-1839
15Newcastle UnitedNewcastle34108163243-1138
16Southampton3399153954-1536
17Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton3396183253-2133
18Cardiff CityCardiff3494213063-3331
RFulham3455243276-4420
RHuddersfield TownHuddersfield3435261967-4814
Scroll for more - Tap for full version
X

We value your privacy

A part of our GDPR compliance we need to ask for your consent. We and our partners use technology such as cookies on Sports Mole to personalise content and ads, provide social media features, and analyse our traffic. Click below to consent to the use of this technology on Sports Mole.