53-year-old former Liverpool Managing Director Christian Purslow has been talking about Newcastle’s potential takeover, and the British businessman has lots of experience in mergers and acquisitions (M&A) during his career.
Purslow has said he thinks it highly unlikely that Newcastle can be sold before the end of this year even though owner Mike Ashley seems to want to do just that.
Ashley has said he is even willing to accept staged payments to finally sell the club; he’s tried that twice before and failed to secure a buyer each time.
Purslow thinks the more likely scenario is that Newcastle will be sold closer to the end of the season.
That’s when the buyers will have a better idea where Newcastle are in the table, how they have performed in the Premier League in our first season back and what revenues they will receive from the PL in May.
It’s a long-ranging interview Christian has given to Sky Sports and is being reported in the Chronicle today.
Christian Purslow – former Liverpool Managing Director
Here’s some of the interview about the potential time-frame of the deal:
“It’s very risky for any business to go public but in this case, it’s clear Mike Ashley wants out. He wants out as soon as possible – he’s spent, by my calculations, about £250million buying the club, clearing it’s debts and so forth.”
“He has a chance now – there’s a limited window to recover that money, they’re flying high in the league, they’ve got a fantastic coach, the Premier League TV money is on the up.”
But he knows it’s a precarious position – they’ve been relegated twice and he doesn’t want to take a risk of that happening again, hence the very unusual measure of announcing a quick sale and also staged payments.”
“I’ve spent most of my life buying companies – clean, well-run, predictable companies.”
“Probably that takes six months to execute a sale. Football clubs are anything but – they’re complicated, where the club finishes in the league determines value.”
“People trying to buy a football club – it’s a lot easier to time that at the end of a season when you can see where a club sits, you can see what its financials actually look like.”
“Any buyer is going to need to get to the bottom of the tax investigation too. My feeling as an experienced mergers and acquisitions guy is that selling Newcastle in the next six weeks looks extraordinarily unlikely.”
“If I was a betting man, I’d think it will be sold by the end of the season – not by Christmas.”
It’s going to be interesting to see what funds Rafa Benitez is given in January if the club is not sold by then.
And maybe Rafa will try to do some loan deals at that time and even sell some players.
Jack Colback, Aleksandar Mitrovic, and others could be sold – to get some transfer money into the club so he can bring reinforcements in.