We think Mike Ashley is a frustrated man right now, because of all the reports in the gossip press, on things he’s not doing, and not even thinking of doing.
Mike Ashley – getting a raw deal from the press?
But that’s probably only a definition of what the gossip press prints.
We don’t want to come over as patronizing to the owner, but we do think Mike is getting a bit of a raw deal in the press, and of course you can’t blame our fans for believing some of the news.
Recent reports suggested Newcastle had held informal discussions with American private equity firm InterMedia Partners over the sale of the club.
Fresh speculation then emerged, just one day later, that claimed a construction company owned by the family of Osama bin Laden were considering a bid, but those claims were later rebuffed by both parties in the Evening Chronicle earlier this week.
In a bid to communicate about these reports Newcastle owner Mike Ashley, who very rarely speaks at all to the press, has talked to the London Evening Standard today:
“That (the rumour of a sale) is not true.”
However, Ashley has for the first time admitted he is seeking additional investors in the club and added:
“I would say that I am keen to have partners in Newcastle. That’s a very expensive seat I sit in.”
On the recent news on the Saudi Binladen Group (SBG), Ashley continued:
“I think I’ll start with people from Newcastle, not in some cave in Afghanistan.”
So from what Mike says it does look like he’s trying to lighten his financial load a little by possibly selling some small interest in the club to others, which could include consortiums.
Maybe that explains why SBG told the Evening Chronicle they were not interested now but could be in six months time.
That probably means they would be interested in investing in Newcastle, and that means they could be willing to buy say 10% of the club.
There seems nothing wrong or untoward about that, as far as we can see.
We think the confusion could be that Mike is indeed seeking partners, who are unwilling to invest in Newcastle United – and we think Mike can sell 20% without losing any control at all.
But these attempts may be being interpreted by the press as Mike trying to sell the club lock, stock and barrel – that seems like a plausible explanation.
As long as Ashley retains ownership of a sufficient percentage of the club, he will still be in complete control of all decisions affecting Newcastle United.
And it would be good for the club, if we do get new investors (partners) because no doubt Mike will want to them to put some money in our transfer fund, as part of the deal. 😀
He’s a very savvy and experienced businessman.
Finally, we wonder why Mike didn’t put this communication out via the Newcastle United official web site or even the local Evening Chronicle.
Comments welcome, but please keep them civil.