Sporting Club CEO spells out Everton interest

by | 18/10/2015  94 Comments  [Jump to last]
Robb Heineman, CEO of Sporting Club which own Major League Soccer team Sporting Kansas City, has admitted he explored the possibility of a deal with Bill Kenwright for taking over Everton back in August, but says a deal was never close to coming to fruition.

Reports this past week, most notably from the BBC, suggested that the Americans were looking at a potential purchase of Everton for around 225m but Heineman, who confirms he visited Goodison Park for the friendly against Villarreal, admits neither the timing nor the price were right at the time.

We went over there in August, and were always opportunistic with opportunities like that," he is quoted as saying in the Liverpool Echo. Was it ever close? No. Was it something that we still think about here and there? Sure. But do I actually think were seriously in the running for it? No.

We went back [to Everton in August] to talk to Bill Kenwright about exploring if there was an opportunity for us. We had a good talk, learned a lot, but the timing probably just didnt work out really well for us.

It probably wasnt the right set of circumstances, wasnt the right price, we probably werent ready to pull the trigger. There are a lot of different things that just led us to think that its not the time for us to do it right now.

On the back of the Premier League's growing exposure in the United States, Heineman believes, however, that his is not the only group taking a serious look at Everton at the moment. Nor are the Blues the only team Sporting Club might consider if they decide to further pursue the takeover of an English club.

I actually think there are a couple of legitimate groups that are talking to Bill Kenwright right now about buying the team, he told ESPN. But I think there are some serious groups that are in the mix and I think it will get solved in the next few months.

I think were going to keep looking at stuff in the EPL for sure. The thing about Everton is its such a solid foundation of fans, such a solid foundation as a club.

From a profit standpoint theyre a very profitable club in the EPL, which isnt always the case. It was very intriguing, and Liverpool is a beautiful place. So for all those reasons it made some sense, but at the end of the day it just wasnt the right thing.

Quotes sourced from Liverpool Echo

Reader Comments (94)

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Patrick Murphy
1 Posted 18/10/2015 at 15:23:42
So the original people linked with purchasing Everton are no longer interested; however, there may well be others who retain an interest – watch this space. :)

Peter Weaver
2 Posted 18/10/2015 at 16:47:07
''It wasn't the right price'' was probably the major reason for the loss of interest. It always will be.
Brian Williams
3 Posted 18/10/2015 at 16:49:38
Hmmmm a couple of comments in there that Bill's probably pleaded with him to make....others in the mix, sorted in the next few months.....If only!
Duncan McDine
4 Posted 18/10/2015 at 17:15:41
Interesting read. It certainly sounds like the price has always been the sticking point. I'd love to believe that there are other 'serious parties' involved, but we've heard it all before.
Brent Stephens
5 Posted 18/10/2015 at 17:35:07
CEO of Sporting Club:

"I actually think there are a couple of legitimate groups that are talking to Bill Kenwright right now about buying the team," he told ESPN. "But I think there are some serious groups that are in the mix and I think it will get solved in the next few months."

How does he know?

Hugh Jenkins
6 Posted 18/10/2015 at 17:58:15
Brent (#5). Maybe he's asked to be kept informed. If, at the end of the day, Bill can't get the price he wants and brings the price down, Kansas my still be interested. After all, he made it pretty clear that the price was the sticking point.
Nicholas Ryan
7 Posted 18/10/2015 at 18:19:21
There is talk that Blue Bill wants 𧶙 million. Didn't Everton ask an expert to value the Club recently [I think his name was Beardwood] and didn't he produce a figure of about 𧴺 million?

If Everton's own expert valued the Club at 𧴺M ... which lunatic is going to pay 𧶙M??!!

Brent Stephens
8 Posted 18/10/2015 at 18:27:40
Hugh #6 - maybe that's it. Wait and see I suppose. Can I stop holding my breath?!
Ian Riley
9 Posted 18/10/2015 at 18:34:11
The price of the club and investment required to improve the ground and team will be two major points of purchase. Furthermore, no-one knows how much debt the club has. Teams like Man City, Arsenal, and West Ham in two years have new stadiums. Matchday revenue is double to what we have.

Whatever the for-sale price, being over priced will have a detrimental effect on the club in new owners reinvesting into the club.

Who knows what the future holds but the Chairman has done a great job for the club and community with the resources he has.

Colin Glassar
10 Posted 18/10/2015 at 18:36:53
Once we get it into our thick heads that Chairman Bill has absolutely no intention whatsoever of selling the club, then we'll all be better off. Less stress and hassle.
Roger Helm
11 Posted 18/10/2015 at 18:38:11
The club could really do with the investment and the business knowhow they would bring. But it seems Bill is too greedy for a big payday (how much money does he need?) and/or can't bear to be out of the limelight.

So it seems we will go on stagnating for a while longer.

Andy Walker
12 Posted 18/10/2015 at 18:40:36
Thank god it didn't come to anything. A club 20 years old with an average gate of less than 20,000 taking over our club. Kansas has already renamed its team 3 times in those 20 years, as well as its ground.

So at least we won't be the Everton Chiefs playing at the Matalan Park stadium.

Denis Richardson
13 Posted 18/10/2015 at 18:42:26
I thought BK was looking for 'investment'... ie, someone puts a load of money into the club and ... BK still calls the shots. Que - 24/7 search still going on over 10 years later...

Still, as a shareholder, if someone really is foolish enough to value the club at £225M(!), I'll be selling my tiny holding in flash! (Current share price x the number of shares = about £47M value!

(Yes, I know there is also a premium for control, just pointing out the massive difference between the current 'value' of the club per the share price and supposed amount the major shareholders are looking at.)

Patrick Murphy
14 Posted 18/10/2015 at 18:44:32
Colin (#10)

But if the rumours of Bill's illness are true then surely it is only a matter of time before the club is put up for sale? His health must be of paramount importance to him and his family and Everton FC, although important to him, will have to take a back seat, which is okay for a brief period of time but not for the long-term future of the club.

It would seem to me that, given the other board members aren't sufficiently interested in the club, it will have to be sold – and sold in the next six to twelve months. Whether the price is right... none of us know, but we just have to wait to see what transpires.

Colin Glassar
15 Posted 18/10/2015 at 18:56:56
Like you say Patrick, "rumours". None of us know if he is sick (I hope not) or not as we haven't been informed by any credible source.

Bill has shown himself to be unable, or unwilling, to find a buyer for almost two decades now. Why should we suddenly think he's had an epiphany and seen the light?

Andy Walker
16 Posted 18/10/2015 at 19:03:43
I would expect there is be some shareholder protection arrangements in place in the event of serious illness for Bill. If so, this will avoid any need for hasty share sales to new investors.
Patrick Murphy
17 Posted 18/10/2015 at 19:04:02

If the man isn't ill, wouldn't it be incumbent upon him to say so? But it would appear that he isn't in the best of health as his absence from Goodison Park for most if not all of this season would seem to support.

Dave Abrahams
18 Posted 18/10/2015 at 19:09:27
Patrick (17), I never saw Kenwright myself yesterday but according to an observer, on GOT, he was present yesterday. Even that doesn't mean he is well, if he was there.
Jay Harris
19 Posted 18/10/2015 at 19:17:32
If the sales terms are the same as a few years ago when they were asking £200M, then they are very complicated and it is that and the asking price which is deterring serious buyers.

The playing squad may be worth more than £100M but the debt is around that and GP (our only asset) is mortgaged to the tune of £15M.

I think the valuation of ~£125m is about correct in the current climate but I can't see Earl and Green going for that.

Watch his space.

Colin Glassar
20 Posted 18/10/2015 at 19:26:09
He's not under any obligation to share his health problems with us, Patrick, as he's a private citizen just like the rest of us. I suppose, as long as he's sound of mind, he can continue to run the club as he sees fit.
Jim Hardin
21 Posted 18/10/2015 at 19:32:20

Sporting KC averages less than 20,000 fans because the soccer/rugby stadium seats just under 19,000. They sell out their games.

Also, in 20 years (odd that time period for Everton history isn't it) Sporting KC, and the Wiz/Wizards before the name change, have won titles, currently hold the MLS Cup, and just won the Open Cup. Seems maybe Everton ownership could learn a little about winning things from these folks.

Colin Glassar
22 Posted 18/10/2015 at 19:47:26
Are you taking the wiz Jim? They actually have a club called The Wizards? See, that's why I'm against foreign ownership and their obsession with name changing.
Kevin Tully
23 Posted 18/10/2015 at 19:56:51
Our eventual sale will prove to be immensely complicated. We have 3 major shareholders who may all place differing valuations on their shareholding, plus possible third parties (Green) involved behind the scenes. Add in long term mortgages, a poor commercial deprtment and little or no assets off the pitch, it's a veritable minefield for any potential buyer.

There is no doubt we could have been sold many times before this point, but it's clear the likes of Earl, and possibly the other two, will be holding out for maximum returns. They clearly realise the value of the club will only increase as the broadcasting rights to the Premier League sky-rocket.

I wouldn't hold my breath on any sale though, especially as the Aston Villa & West Brom sales recently fell through, even after they reached the due diligence process. As I've often stated on here, we are absolutely crying out for fresh thinking and a new approach at boardroom level. It's an absolute sin the way Goodison Park has been left untouched while we lurch from one failed scheme to the next.

Colin Glassar
24 Posted 18/10/2015 at 20:15:22
Spot on, KT. When we are faced with the choice of some dodgy Yank or some ominous Russki, I think I might just prefer to stick with our present bunch of incompetent clowns. At least we won't be renamed the Everton Frito Lays or the Everton Novosty Cossacks.
Steve Guy
25 Posted 18/10/2015 at 20:25:45
Only Everton and only the Dear Leader. Has he recovered from being ill? He was clearly well enough to talk about this deal in August apparently.

Either way, a price of £225m (or even half of that) is ridiculous for a Club with no assets other than players and Sky revenue. I never thought this was on and just a set-up for the AGM.

He will need to be forced into selling at a realistic price and that isn't going to happen anytime soon.

Andy Walker
26 Posted 18/10/2015 at 20:39:33
Er Jim they originally had an 80,000 seater or thereabouts and still only got around 16,000 ever week until they moved to a SMALLER stadium.
Andy Walker
27 Posted 18/10/2015 at 20:44:03
Jim they'd sell anything for a fast buck regardless of the history associated with our great club. They would simply not be a good match for our great historic club in my opinion.
Tony Abrahams
28 Posted 18/10/2015 at 21:12:25
Jim (#21), it seems that Everton's ownership could learn a thing or two about winning things from these folk.

If Everton, are sold for over £200 Million, then the people doing the selling will have won an absolute fucking fortune.

The people saying shareholders don't have to invest a single penny might be right. But anyone who has saddled our club with so much debt over the years, rather than spend a little of their own money, has shown what their true intentions have been since day one.

Trevor Lynes
29 Posted 18/10/2015 at 21:48:26
The problem with just expecting an outsider to invest in our club is a bit of a cheek. Our boardroom who own the shares have made a healthy profit over the years and have never invested any of their own money so how can they expect an outsider to put money into the club without having control?

Bill has always been after investment with him remaining at the helm and that is enough to dissuade outside money coming in.

Our motto is incorrect as we are now survival driven; as long as we are clear of relegation struggles, we will continue to tread water.

Gaute Lie
30 Posted 18/10/2015 at 22:03:41
If the buyers wish to earn fast money, football is not the place to invest in, and surely not Everton.

Also, the sum mentioned to be £225 mill would include all the clubs debts, and then we are close to £130 mill in money paid to our current owners.

I would sell only to buyers with a special interest in the sport... or best, in Everton.

Liverpool is owned by Americans, so is Man Utd. I can't say I envy neither of them for their ownership...

Patrick Murphy
31 Posted 18/10/2015 at 22:40:47
Guate (29) We've had an Evertonian in charge of our club for nearly sixteen years I don't suppose Manchester United or Liverpool supporters have envied us for our ownership during that period.
Paul Jeronovich
32 Posted 18/10/2015 at 23:16:16
Can anyone be trusted with OUR club? Fuck these businessmen who have no interest in the values and heritage the football club brings to individuals and communities.

It's a sad reality that football is now about how much money can be squeezed out of TV companies and fans to feed the fat paypackets of owners, shareholders and the players. I'm getting severely pissed off with football in general and the money men who have steered the beautiful game on to a path of greed and corruption.

The game needs a major club to go tits up or a sensible wage cap before an end is brought to this madness. Rant over and back to the real world tomorrow where I direct destitute families to their nearest food bank!!!!

Ernie Baywood
33 Posted 19/10/2015 at 00:18:16
I'm not sure how people deduce from these quotes that it's clear that Bill doesn't want to sell. Surely it's evidence to the contrary?

On the price. The club doesn't have a sticker price – it's a negotiation. Rooney wasn't for sale at £50M... it was just a negotiating position.

The evidence for our eventual sale is starting to mount... we know it has to happen at some point.

I'm not particularly black and white when it comes to Bill. I believe he has had partial success but failed to attract true investment to push us on. He kind of mirrors our former manager's performance. He's been part of some terrible schemes, plans and missed opportunities; I want him gone but I am convinced that he believes he is seeking out the right buyer for the club.

Garry Corgan
34 Posted 19/10/2015 at 01:05:57
Very interesting read. It could be taken at face value - that the Americans were interested but have now backed away. Another way to look at it is a piece of posturing, using the media as a communication device. Whether it's this group or another, I do believe that it's only a matter of time now before someone takes over.

It wouldn't surprise me at all if somebody bought out Robert Earl's 23% and another 3% on the open market to become our largest (albeit not majority) shareholder. That would at least force Kenwright's and Woods's hands.

Jim Hardin
35 Posted 19/10/2015 at 01:07:07
Colin, It was unfortunate but Mr Hunt, who basically helped start the MLS, named them that. I don't know if it was a conflict with the then Washington Wizards from another of our sports or not. The name was changed to the Wizards which is a little better. Our major sports follow no rhyme or reason when naming teams.

MLS teams in order to build an identity for soccer here have been changing names of clubs and naming new ones along the lines of every other country which is why we have Sporting KC, NYCFC, Real Salt Lake, Toronto FC, FC Dallas, etc.


They started play in Arrowhead Stadium, which is what you are referring to. It isn't even located in Kansas but rather, Missouri, and was not a good place to watch soccer. They then moved to a recently built baseball stadium (minor league) while Sporting Park was being built. This was slightly better (but under 10,500 seating, but still was a baseball stadium. IT was at least in Kansas City, Kansas. Since being in the Sporting Park facility, the attendance is regularly sell-outs.

Matt Traynor
36 Posted 19/10/2015 at 03:24:27
"From a profit standpoint they're a very profitable club in the EPL, which isn't always the case."

Fantastic. Means we can borrow more to generate more interest payments for Bill's "Friends of Everton".

Eric Myles
37 Posted 19/10/2015 at 03:48:23
Matt #35, you may be jesting (?) but the borrowings from Vibrac increased by £8m in the last accounts.
Hugh Jenkins
38 Posted 19/10/2015 at 04:00:16
One thing intrigues me in relation to the ongoing "quest" by many of the clubs in the EPL nowadays for a move to stadia with a capacity of almost twice that of their current venues. How and why do they think they are going to fill those stadia every other week?

Let us take EFC as an example. If we suddenly had a 60,000 seat stadium, why do we believe that we will magically get a further 20,000 paying fans attending games every other week?

Apart from a few games each season we do not play to capacity crowds now, so where are the additional "paying" fans going to come from?

This is equally true of West Ham, Spurs etc.

I grant you that nothing can equal the live match-day experience, but with so much "live" TV coverage nowadays and the opportunity to record matches to watch them several hours after they have been played, I sometimes think the drive for larger stadia is a folly.

Having said that there is nothing to equal a live match-day experience, equally, in my mind, there is nothing so demoralising as watching a live game in a stadium where up to 50% of the seats are empty.

Eric Myles
39 Posted 19/10/2015 at 04:07:10
Hugh, I think that the 'need' to have a bigger stadium is two-fold.

Firstly, it's more to do with non-matchday revenue possibilities like concerts, RWC, etc.

Secondly, it's cheaper to build bigger now and fill it when the club becomes more successful than to try to expand or relocate later.

Peter Barry
40 Posted 19/10/2015 at 06:40:45
Boys Pen Billy does not want to sell – he wants a investor that will leave HIM in charge... and, as long as that continues, there will be no movement.
Jim Hourigan
41 Posted 19/10/2015 at 09:13:49
Times they are a-changing!! Bill is quite ill and, I believe, is seriously looking at the club beyond his tenure. His overriding desire has always been to leave it in the 'right hands' and impose certain conditions, and this has become more of a sticking point than the money.

Sadly for Bill, this is becoming more and more pressing as an issue because of his health and I understand, metaphorically speaking, there are vultures circling waiting to pick up a bargain if and when he lowers his price and his conditions.

Dave Abrahams
42 Posted 19/10/2015 at 09:22:51
Jim (41) what makes you believe that Kenwright wants to leave Everton in capable hands? Have you some information or insight that makes you say this?

I believe he will have a say in who takes over Everton, if they ever do while he is in charge, but I also think other people will have a bigger say.

Colin Glassar
43 Posted 19/10/2015 at 09:33:21
If that's the case, Peter, then he should just go on Dragons' Den.
Jim Hourigan
44 Posted 19/10/2015 at 09:35:11
Dave (42), Bill has gone on record as saying that whoever owns the club must put Everton's interest before monetary interests – idealistic and somewhat naive in the modern world, but nonetheless his belief. He currently has the greatest say, hence the lack of investment / buying, but when his health dictates that he will no longer have that influence, and that time is approaching far more rapidly than he expected, then it will be left to others - Earl?

He wants his legacy to be a safe pair of hands; many others just want someone with money who could move the club forward, but sadly his ego means he doesn't acknowledge that viewpoint.

Tony Abrahams
45 Posted 19/10/2015 at 09:36:56
Matt 36, your first paragraph sums it up to me. Is this another staged managed manoeuvre, or is there genuine interest in Everton at that price?

It's funny how it's come from Kansas, because behind the scenes at Everton, we have our very own wizard, (Magician, says Bill!) who is every bit as invisible, but a lot more influential, maybe?

What kind of shareholders, or members of the board, would sell the training ground for such a paltry sum, with a view to renting it back at such extortionate rates? Desperate men, or people who don't really care about the football club?

Maybe the Wizard just doesn't exist, And the sale of Everton will go through smoothly!!!!!

Ross Edwards
46 Posted 19/10/2015 at 09:38:32
I hope we can get a takeover completed in the next few months because I dread to think what will happen if Bill's health deteriorates or in the most extreme circumstance, he dies.

Who would be left in charge? There would be a power vacuum.

Earl has a major shareholding but has never been interested; Green is just a 'friend' who certainly wouldn't be interested in running the club... so it looks like Elstone who is 2nd in command if BK is incapacitated.

So I think this is why the takeover talk is going on, and this time I think something will happen. Bill is clearly seriously ill, as he has missed a number of games this season and even more worryingly for me, hasn't yet made a statement or said anything publicly about Kendall's death.

Bill's health is definitely the main factor of this takeover talk, I have no doubt about that at all. I really hope that he recovers from whatever illness he is fighting.

Some people on Twitter have been saying he possibly has a brain tumour, whether that's true or not I don't know. Has anyone heard anything recently?

Tony Abrahams
47 Posted 19/10/2015 at 09:41:14
Jim (#41), I think the vultures have been hiding behind the scenes for years, mate!
Harold Matthews
48 Posted 19/10/2015 at 09:41:16
I can never understand why old men want millions. I guess they get some weird kind of kick out of negotiating mega-bucks deals. Sort of an old-age sex substitute.
Tony Abrahams
49 Posted 19/10/2015 at 09:47:12
Just like Hyman Roth, Harold? It's always been all about power.
Dave Abrahams
50 Posted 19/10/2015 at 09:54:40
Jim (44), fair enough, I just thought maybe you knew a bit more about Kenwright's situation.

I don't think he is naive, I think he wants what will suit him rather than Everton, but like yourself I don't know the man; I think you would trust him a lot more than me.

Jim Hourigan
51 Posted 19/10/2015 at 10:09:46
Dave (#49),

No, I don't know him personally and like you I don't trust him; however, my comments are more than supposition and guesswork – they do come from sound information reliably obtained.

Jason Heng
52 Posted 19/10/2015 at 11:26:33
𧶙million... 40,000 fans = � each. Not entirely unaffordable. What are we waiting for?
Liam Reilly
53 Posted 19/10/2015 at 11:30:27
"The timing nor the price was right"

If they instigated this process at all then the timing must've been somewhat right, otherwise why bother? Therefore, reading between the lines, the outrageous price must have been the far bigger stumbling block.

Interesting to read that they see the club as profitable even with the debt; but then if the club is to pay extortionate interest rates to a clandestine operation in the Caymans... well, I guess there is money to be made.

Craig Harrison
55 Posted 19/10/2015 at 12:28:08
Timing not right = Bill won't sell... but his hand may be forced soon with his ill-health. When that happens, we have a deal in place with the other major shareholders.

Price not right = Bill is asking too much for his shares. But again, his hand may be forced due to ill-health.

[Possible scenario; no personal knowledge.]

Harold Matthews
56 Posted 19/10/2015 at 12:42:27
Cheers, Tony. Mr Roth was the kind of powerful, never to be trusted, master money manipulator I wouldn't want in Everton's boardroom but we may have one or two of a similar nature already in there.
Mark Stone
57 Posted 19/10/2015 at 15:13:43
Has American ownership really worked out well for any club?
Colin Glassar
58 Posted 19/10/2015 at 15:16:35
Short answer — NO.

Long answer — Nooooooooooooo.

Brent Stephens
59 Posted 19/10/2015 at 15:34:47
Jason (#52)

"𧶙million... 40,000 fans = � each. Not entirely unaffordable. What are we waiting for?"

Quite right. Let me have your email address and I'll give you my bank details so you can make the first contribution!

Denis Richardson
60 Posted 19/10/2015 at 16:01:35
Does anyone anywhere actually know if BK is ill? It's been rumoured and repeated umpteen times but there has been no confirmation whether he is or isn't actually ill. Personally, until there IS confirmation, I'll believe that there's nothing wrong with him.

As to the possible sale, we can but dream. We've been down this road god knows how many times. Until there's something concrete, I think we can safely move on, unless people want to carry on dreaming.

As for BK 'wanting to leave the club in capable hands' — that's hilarious. What a perfect way to have a built-in excuse for never letting go! He can always just say 'the seller wasn't the correct fit'. He's living his dream and he just isn't going to let go of the train set (unless someone is daft enough to offer up a ridiculous price.... and still leave BK in charge = never going to happen in his lifetime).

We're stuck with him for better or worse for a few seasons yet. (Just like GP.)

Denis Richardson
61 Posted 19/10/2015 at 16:13:01
Mark (#56) – what do you have against being owned by Americans? In fact what's the issue full stop being owned by any specific nationality?

Don't really understand what the nationality of the owner has to do with it. Main thing is that the owner (can be from Mars for all I care) runs the club properly and tries to take it forward the right way. If supporters can come from anywhere, why not the owner(s)?

As to your question: Well, Arsenal are majority owned by an American (haven't exactly done too badly) as well as Man Utd (how many trophies have they won since 2005 when the Glazers took over? You don't find too many Man Utd fans moaning about them now...). It's always easy to pick out the likes of Blackburn, Leeds and Portsmouth but every other club doing well was also taken over at some point by someone – English or otherwise.

Other examples off the top of my head: Southampton are owned by Swiss – not doing too badly since they took over a few years ago. Barcodes owned by a Brit and they have been a basket case of a club.

Ken Buckley
62 Posted 19/10/2015 at 16:19:49
Denis (#59),

I was told he was not in his seat on Saturday Considering the HK tribute plus Man Utd at home, then I am inclined to believe he is not too good.

If it is an illness, I wish him a speedy recovery.

Michael Kenrick
63 Posted 19/10/2015 at 16:28:12
Despite our vulnerability to illness and disease, there's often reluctance to admit it publically, and have it discussed. (Although isn't it traditionally the favourite topic of your ailing relatives?!)

However, I thought we'd had a couple of media articles over the last few months referring to Bill Kenwright having been ill. And, as Ken suggests, missing so many matches, the inference seems obvious.

Gordon Crawford
64 Posted 19/10/2015 at 16:28:35
I'm no Bill Kenwright supporter by any means; but if the man is ill, then I wish him a speedy and full recovery.

As for whole takeover of Everton, I'll believe it only when I see it, and by that, I mean the takeover is finalised and our new owners are paraded at Goodison.

Mark Stone
65 Posted 19/10/2015 at 16:42:59
Denis, I don't particularly care about the nationality of the club's owners. But it is prudent to be aware that just because they are billionaire Americans, it doesn't necessarily mean that they could improve our fortunes on or off the pitch. I'm sure fans of Aston Villa, Fulham and Sunderland would agree. Liverpool were certainly more successful in the years preceding the glorious days of Gillet and Hicks.

Of the two clubs you cite as examples of who it has worked out well for, the foreign investment hardly transformed their fortunes, did it? Not like either were languishing in mid-table or hovering above the relegation zone before they came in.

Brian Harrison
66 Posted 19/10/2015 at 16:49:48
Michael (#62),

I guess that whatever is wrong with BK then he probably doesn't want it in an open forum, which I fully understand. I don't think he or the club have said anything publicly about it and I think it should be left that way. I know some may say he should divulge what is wrong, but unless it impairs him making decisions about the club, then he should be allowed to carry on without constant questions.

Michael Kenrick
67 Posted 19/10/2015 at 16:59:49
I think that's probably how it will play out, Brian, although not sure I agree about the constant questions. Just tell it as it is. What's wrong with that?

It's another difference with the Yanks. Seems whenever a public figure has a health problem, they just come right out with it and say what they have, even where they are getting treatment, and that's just the norm. After all, it's not something all this mouth-covered whispering is going to change...

Brian Harrison
68 Posted 19/10/2015 at 17:27:26
Michael, the yanks might do it differently but I think if BK has something really nasty, then what would be gained by putting the information into the public domain? The press would want to know what happens if this or that scenario happens. Then the issue becomes BK's health, so every press conference and every news story about Everton will have an inference to how the Chairman is doing.

Plus if the guy is ill would you want the world to be openly discussing your illness, and speculating about the what if all the time.

Denis Richardson
69 Posted 19/10/2015 at 17:32:11
Mark – not really sure what point it is you're trying to make. You're post #56 specifically states American owners, ie, implying you don't want Everton to be bought by Americans. That was how I read it anyway.

I'm simply saying the nationality of the owner is (imo) irrelevant – main thing is how the club is run. There will be examples of clubs being run well and not well for pretty much any nationality so I don't agree with your statement in post #56 – assuming I read it right.

Btw – I don't expect any owner to have to cough up multiple millions of their own money and pump it into a black hole (not sure where I stated this in my post btw), all I ask is that the club is run well from a business perspective and has a plan that is substantially more than just avoiding relegation – which is essentially what the Everton Business Plan has been for about 20 years (in fact since BK took over......). Fans not being treated as idiots would also be a bonus but then we can't have it all.....

Ken (#61) – I understand where you're coming from but until it's confirmed I'm not going to believe BK is seriously ill. He was okay enough to hold an interview promoting his theatre company not too long ago. I don't wish anyone ill health but I'm not going to start wishing people well if it's not even known whether they are actually ill or not – at the moment, only rumours.

Mark Stone
70 Posted 19/10/2015 at 17:48:01
'Mark – not really sure what point it is you're trying to make. You're post #56 specifically states American owners, ie, implying you don't want Everton to be bought by Americans. That was how I read it anyway.'

For clarity, my post specifically stated American owners because that is what this thread is about.

'I'm simply saying the nationality of the owner is (imo) irrelevant – main thing is how the club is run. There will be examples of clubs being run well and not well for pretty much any nationality so I don't agree with your statement in post #56 – assuming I read it right.'

It's not a statement, it's a question. How can you disagree with a question?

'Btw – I don't expect any owner to have to cough up multiple millions of their own money and pump it into a black hole (not sure where I stated this in my post btw)'

Have I insinuated somewhere that you did?

'all I ask is that the club is run well from a business perspective and has a plan that is substantially more than just avoiding relegation – which is essentially what the Everton Business Plan has been for about 20 years (in fact since BK took over......). Fans not being treated as idiots would also be a bonus but then we can't have it all.....'

Good for you ,mate.

Jamie Crowley
71 Posted 19/10/2015 at 19:40:06
I'm so hoping Americans buy Everton.

So many people with just a wee little twinge of Anti-American in them... and a few who just don't like us at all.

It would make for some fantastic little posts on TW.

Oh, and yes, we'd not only tell you if the owner were ill, we'd definitely tell you where he's getting treatment, what the prognosis is, and we'd quote his / her's doctor for good measure.

What's there to hide? Is a bout of leprosy going around? Anyone pick up any juicy STDs lately?

Harold Matthews
72 Posted 19/10/2015 at 20:21:23
Bill Kenwright may be a slippery character who swims fearlessly with the sharks of Show Business, but he is also a massive Everton fan with fond memories that stretch back a long way.

If he were young it might be different but, the way things stand for him at present, I firmly believe that he seeks what's best for our great club.

Ian McDowell
74 Posted 19/10/2015 at 20:24:56
I have no idea what goes on or who runs our club and what the asking price is. What hope is there for selling in the future? Probably not much.
Ian Smitham
75 Posted 19/10/2015 at 21:45:34
Craig (#54), can you spell out what this agreement is please??
Dave Abrahams
77 Posted 19/10/2015 at 22:43:13
Harold (#71) you say Kenwright is a massive Evertonian; I've always thought of the man as a pseudo-Evertonian.

As for him having long and fond memories of the Blues, I'm think a good deal of his memories have more than a tint of fantasy about them.

Jay Harris
78 Posted 19/10/2015 at 23:00:21
It was rumoured and I stress rumoured (and not just on ToffeeWeb but in the business world too) a few months ago that Bill had been told he had a brain tumour and had been told to avoid anything too stressful (or exciting I guess) which may explain why he does not attend games anymore.

It will be interesting to see if he is able to make the AGM or whether some sort of announcement will be made beforehand.

Much as I dislike the man, I hope if he is ill, it is not too serious.

Alex Trevalyn
79 Posted 19/10/2015 at 23:28:28
@70 Yeah a case of crabs picked up in Amsterdam on leave, which is infinitely less painful than your flag waving bullshit.
Jamie Crowley
80 Posted 19/10/2015 at 23:46:42
Hahaha Alex! Beautiful.

If 'Mericans buy Everton there will be some side-splitting one-liners here.

Good luck with those little critters. Shampoo vigorously, and often. I'll put my flag away out of respect for your hilarious post and your "ailment".

Eric Myles
81 Posted 20/10/2015 at 00:33:09
Denis (#60), Leicester are owned by Thais and they're not doing so bad at the moment.
Harold Matthews
82 Posted 20/10/2015 at 04:30:49
Dave. He's a True Blue. Always has been, always will be. Has probably travelled to more away games, in all sorts of weather, than any other chairman, often on his own. Not easy for an elderly guy believe me. Austria, Germany, Russia, the Far East, America. He's done the Grand Tour.

As for his slightly over-the-top fond memories... well, Dave, he's not only a scouser, he's also in Show Business. That gives him a double excuse. Ask Evertonians about Dave Hickson, Alan Ball, the Golden Vision, Big Dunc or Big Nev and they will fantasize till the cows come home. According to Moyes, Martinez and Joe Royle, BK has a great knowledge of the game and can talk football all night long.

Andy Peers
83 Posted 20/10/2015 at 05:34:41
Harold (#79),

As much as I have read and respected your posts, I can not agree BK is a true blue but as you say, he is in show business. There are a number of true blues that have either played, managed or overseen EFC and Kenwright does not come even close to the ones I could name.

You have to remember that he has the power to steer our ship in the new found wealth of the Premier League and it looks like he is the man overboard.

I do, however, believe he is a supporter of EFC but does not go through the emotions of us little folk. He judges defeat and bad publicity as a personal threat, so the main reason he wants us to be successful is to take pressure off him.

Amit Vithlani
84 Posted 20/10/2015 at 06:12:12
BK's credentials as a blue might be sound, and he may be seeking a sound custodian for the club, but unless someone has a copy of the shareholders agreement and/or other documents, we cannot tell for certain how great his ability is to influence or prevent a sale.

He could be forced to sell his shares, for example, if there are drag-along rights which are not uncommon. This is where a pre-agreed valuation is met and a certain number of shareholders have accepted a bid, requiring a minority block to sell.

It's difficult to know the dynamics without the details. The past failure to sell was attributed by many on here to BK blocking such a move. Again difficult to say if he could do this; perhaps the valuations were below a certain threshold which preserved his minority rights. We will not know unless details of the shareholder agreement are made public.

The statement from the prospective buyers hints at a timing issue as well as a price issue. What could the timing relate to? New Stadium plans? Or some change in the shareholder construct? BK's health?

There are more questions than answers from this episode.

Eric Myles
85 Posted 20/10/2015 at 06:23:32
Amit, or maybe BK's ability to sell his shares is controlled by the loan agreement with his friend that he owes the money to?
Brent Stephens
86 Posted 20/10/2015 at 08:42:44
Amit (#81). I always love your posts. I learn so much from them (as I do from Eric's). You always go beyond the simple "Bill is a con-merchant" or "Bill is a true Blue and must have our interests at heart", and you provide so many interesting possibilities (albeit unknowns) as to what might be going on, as opposed to wild supposition.
Gordon Crawford
87 Posted 20/10/2015 at 08:55:11
To say Bill Kenwright is not a true blue is a bit of an insult to the man. I don't doubt for a second that he isn't as passionate as we are. But that doesn't mean he is always right in how he runs the club, far from it. I believe that his heart gets in the way of his brain in making the right decisions for the club.

But he needs to do the right thing and sell the club; it's time for big changes at Everton or we will get left behind. I do believe that it we don't change ownership soon then all the improvements we have made will be cast to the wind.

Dave Abrahams
88 Posted 20/10/2015 at 12:11:22
Harold (#79), I'm sticking to what I said: he's a pseudo Evertonian. I don't care how many games he's been to...

As for his knowledge of football, I had a ten-minute conversation with him a few years ago, had to put him right on a couple of Everton matters that most of us knew, including one about his idol Davie Hickson.

He went on all those trips as a Director or Chairman of Everton, loves the limelight and the glory of being part of the club.

He must have been the only young boy who went in the Boys Pen at Goodison and the Kop at Anfield... a load of nonsense like a lot of the twaddle he comes out with.

Lewis Barclay
90 Posted 20/10/2015 at 18:15:53
Nice strategy by the yanks if they're trying to play a waiting game.
Harold Matthews
91 Posted 20/10/2015 at 19:08:47
Gosh Dave. Sounds like he rubbed you up the wrong way mate. Didn't he get a round in?

As for Dave Hickson. I also loved the fella but can only remember little bits and pieces. I even have trouble with last season. Maybe you're one of these lucky guys with total recall. If so then you were being unfair with Broadway Bill.

Dave Abrahams
92 Posted 20/10/2015 at 23:00:28
Harold, Billy wouldn't get in my company and no doubt he wouldn't want to, he wouldn't last five minutes with those fanciful tales he tells, he'd be well fucked off.
Mike McLoughlin
93 Posted 21/10/2015 at 06:06:21
And the sale of Everton FC fades into history...
Mike McLoughlin
94 Posted 22/10/2015 at 16:56:49
Just make things worse, just heard that the Arabs are buying Liverpool FC. More salt into wounds.
Ray Roche
95 Posted 22/10/2015 at 17:55:17
Mike#90, I posted on another thread that in an article in the Sunday Times, Souness thought that FSG are not bothered whether the RS win a trophy or not. They are waiting for the BT and Sky money to really kick in and hope or expect to sell them on to a Middle or Far Eastern outfit for a fat profit. With the RS having such a world wide appeal you could see it happening.
Alex Doyle
96 Posted 27/10/2015 at 15:24:55
Just to clear up some wild speculation about Everton's debts, it was £28.1 million last year. Not £130 million!

Everton's books are annually audited by independent accountants. That's how it works. No smoke and mirrors. That means that you can have faith in the annual reports. Last one was 31st October 2014, so we should have another one very soon. So we do actually know how much the club is in debt.

I would suggest the increased asking price is down in no small measure to the reduced debt, capacity to earn TV money and young, promising squad.

Patrick Murphy
97 Posted 27/10/2015 at 15:51:35
Alex (92) I don't think the total debt position of the club is £28m i.e. somebody who was willing to settle all the loans etc would need a figure far greater than £28m to have Everton FC debt free. I think the total debt figure for the club is considerably greater than £28m - I hope your interpretation is correct but sadly I think you are mistaken in your belief. Doubtless some of the better informed people on here will give you the actual figures - I know at least one person who thinks the debts are closer to £100m in total.
Alex Doyle
98 Posted 27/10/2015 at 16:49:31
The total net debt is 㿈.1 million.

Everton have two ongoing loans which are a bit like a mortgage. One (㿊 million) will be repaid in full with interest in 2027. The other, which is variable (㿀.1 million last year) is taken out yearly and is repaid annually, from TV revenue. They are to help with the operating costs of running a Premier League team and almost all clubs have them. To include them as part of net debt would be misleading and they would not have to repaid immediately to facilitate a sale.

Again, here's my source.

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