New gen about the much discussed United takeover is thin on the ground right now with journalists banging their heads off walls due to the lack of real information and I guess that is why we’re getting a whole load of speculation and kite-flying right now from some desperate hacks .
Here’s what we know:
- The Bin Zayed Group (BZG) has completed Due Diligence
- BZG has provided proof of funds to United and the Premier League. This was done on 17/Apr/19.
- Terms of Agreement were settled between the parties which included a price for United of £350m
- The Solicitors acting for Ashley is Denton’s – click here who have recently celebrated 50 years working in the UAE and have an office based within Abu Dhabi. They also have operations in Saudi Arabia, Oman, Qatar, Jordan, Lebanon and Egypt. They describe themselves as having: “broadest network of any international firm in the region, allowing us to deploy the very best legal talent to our clients wherever they need us to help them complete a transaction or resolve a dispute“.They have recently celebrated being awarded International Law Firm of the Year in the Middle East as well as netting six awards at the Islamic Finance Awards. They obviously have London offices. Keep an eye out for the name Andrew Henderson, a Partner in the company whose name has previously mentioned in connection to Newcastle United.
- The Solicitors acting for BZG are Pinsent Masons – click here. They also have offices in Abu Dhabi and London. Like Denton’s they are global players. Pinsent Masons advised on the purchase of LOI club Dundalk FC but they have also advised on the 2012 London Olympics. Watch out for the name Trevor Watkins, Pinsent Mason’s Head of Sport. He was previously Chairman at AFC Bournemouth and set up Supporters Direct. He also sat on the board of the Football League.
- A new company Monochrome Acquisitions Ltd has been registered with Companies House. The company address is given as Pinsent Masons LLP, 30 Crown Place, Earl Street, London EC2A 4ES. Sheikh Khaled and lawyer Midhat Kidwai are listed as the only directors.
- Newcastle United have removed St James’ Holdings Investments from the Companies House register. They also removed Newcastle Strawberry Limited, Newcastle Star Limited, Newcastle West Development Limited and SJH Investment Limited too. This was described as “corporate housekeeping“. Our hope is that it is tying up loose ends.
Whilst United has refused to elaborate upon their strict NO COMMENT line, BZG has made two press releases in which they stated:
“In consideration of the numerous speculations in regards to the timelines of the acquisition of Newcastle United Football Club by Bin Zayed Group, we feel the need to issue this statement. Terms have been agreed between us and Mike Ashley; these terms have been reflected in a document, signed by both parties, which has been forwarded to the Premier League. The proof of funds statement was forwarded to Mike Ashley’s lawyers on April 17 2019. The so called fit-and-proper Premier League process is a standard procedure which will take time, and we are doing all we can to assist the Premier League during this process. We feel the need to clarify this point in order for the fans and the general public to understand the timelines.” – Reuters
“We can confirm that representatives of His Highness Sheikh Khaled Bin Zayed Al Nahyan are in discussions with Mike Ashley and his team, about the proposed acquisition of Newcastle United Football Club. We view it as an honour to have the opportunity to build on the strong support, history and tradition of the club. We have agreed terms and are working hard to complete the transaction at the earliest opportunity.” Reuters