The Times is today reporting that Mike Ashley is now prepared to accept around £350M for Newcastle United after his minimum price before was said to be around £380M.
This is a promising development because it does hint that Ashley really wants to sell and will not hold out for too high a price for the club.
Amanda Staveley bid for the club last Friday, and the price would get to £300M – but only if Newcastle hit certain performance-related goals and Ashley would get a bonus payment for each one of those.
But we wrote this morning that Mike Ashley would be willing to accept five yearly payments for £60M for the club, and that seemed a good offer.
Mike Ashley – wants simpler deal – and £350M
We also suggested splitting the difference on the price – Mike wanted £380M, and Amanda Staveley at best would offer £300M – so £340M would seem to be a decent compromise price.
If it’s £350M, then that’s fine.
But PCP Partners would still need to increase their offer quite a bit, and Ashley wants the deal to be simpler without clauses in there for performance-related bonuses and penalties in case the tax investigation charges brought by HMRC doesn’t turn out well.
A relegation penalty clause was also in the initial bid.
If Amanda Staveley on behalf of the consortium she has put together bid £350M for the club – without conditions – Mike Ashley would seem to be willing to accept that deal.
But Staveley would have to bear all the risks including possible relegation and a bad result on the HMRC case.
She would have to trust in Rafa – just like the rest of us already do!
Maybe PCP Partners could make five yearly payments of £70M each, and the deal could possibly get done.
It would also allow the consortium to invest in new players immediately and relive their overall financial burden.
What do you think?