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Ben Hayes - Charlton Athletic programme

Takeovers

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Chinese investors interested in Brentford

Chinese investors are interested in Brentford.   The club recently reported losses of £7.5m and there are question marks about how long owner and fan Matthew Benham can carry on pumping in £15m a year.

The International Investor Group already has a 80 per cent stake in Ligue 1 Nice.  A key figure in the group is Chien Lee, chief executive officer of NewCity Capital, a private investment company that focuses on the hospitality industry.

Australian bid for Charlton

An Australian consortium is bidding to take control of Charlton Athletic from unpopular Belgian owner Roland Duchatelet.

The plan is to make Charlton 'Australia's football club'.   Promising Australian talent would be showcased at The Valley.

The UK chairman of the consortium is the chairman of construction firm Balfour Beatty.

Chelmsford City takeover collapses

The takeover of Chelmsford City by construction company Jade Global Group has collapsed.  The club is now looking for new investment.   Having increased their playing budget after the takeover was announced last summer, the club is now facing short-term financial pressures.

The Clarets looked assured of a place in the National League South play offs.

Charlton is being sold

Despite denials by the club, Charlton Athletic fanzine editor Rick Everitt asserts that the club is being sold. The process is likely to be a long drawn out one of because of various complications such as loans owed to former directors of the club.  

However, various straws in the wind all seem to point in one direction.  Everitt is confident that it is the end of days for the regime of unpopular Belgian owner Roland Duchatelet.

Saints deal near

Southampton have received an improved offer from Lander Sports Development to buy a 100 per cent stake in the club for £190m.  The Chinese development company has proposed a phased takeover in which it would initially buy into the club before taking over full control.

Katharina Liebherr, the club's owner, rejected an offer of £180m in January.   Negotiations are now believed to be at an advanced stage.    The sale is being handled by the Zurich office of the international bank, UBS.

Billionaire bid for Pompey

American billionaire Michael Eisner, former chief executive of Walt Disney, is reported to be interested in launching a bid for Portsmouth FC.

A statement on the club's website said that if a bid was made it would be for shareholders to decide whether it was in the club's best interests.   Portsmouth Supporters' Trust is the largest shareholder.

City to expand global reach

Manchester City's owners are assessing a number of locations as they consider expanding their network of clubs.   The City Football Group already owns New York City and Melbourne City and has a share in Japanese side Yokohama F Marinos.

The Chinese Super League has been identified as a market with potential, while there have been reports of a possible move into South America.   Neither of these locations offers much in the way of gate money, but City may see commercial revenue opportunities.

Sale rumours at Charlton

Following rumours that a sale of Charlton Athletic might be close, a statement from the club has said that it is not for sale 'at the present time' which does not mean that it could not be available next week.

Former Liverpool striker and football consultant Ronnie Rosenthal was reported to be advising an interested consortium and is said to have been shown round The Valley.

Win-win for Berlusconi

In August, after nearly three decades at the helm of A.C. Milan, Silvio Berlusconi announced that he had sold his 99.93 per cent stake in the club to a Chinese investment group called Sino Europe for €520m (about £450m).

According to the terms of the deal, Sino Europe made an immediate down payment of about £85m, the rest to be paid in December.   This down payment was non-refundable.

Progress on Carlisle mystery takeover bid

The 646-day takeover saga at Carlisle United may be nearing a conclusion.   Discussions with a mystery overseas businessman have been going on for the better part of two years, but have gone cold several times.  

However, the club are now close to deciding whether to conclude a deal.   Significant headway has been made in getting answers to outstanding questions.