Date: 30th January 2016 at 6:37pm
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‘After months of work Mr Tamraz and his team have put together a bid to buy the football club from present owner Eddie Davies.

‘Building on the current assets, namely the Macron Stadium, Whites Hotel, Euxton training ground, the Lostock academy, and the Community Trust, Mr Tamraz wants to see Bolton Wanderers once again become a community club at the heart of the Bolton community.

‘If the bid is successful, fans will be involved as never before, as Mr Tamraz seeks to rebuild the image of the club.’


These were the words of a spokesperson for Roger Tamraz, as reported by The Bolton News. It all sounds pretty good, doesn’t it? A billionaire backer who wants to revitalise our club with the fans at the centre of his plans: it’s the stuff of dreams for football fans.

Roger Tamraz does seem to have somewhat of a sketchy past. However, with information on him limited (possibly thanks to good work from his PR team) there are not a lot of concrete facts I can comment on.

What could we expect if he were to take over? No idea. He could poor many millions into the club and get us back to where we belong. He could strip the club of assets and royally screw us over and then leave. He could damage the club in other ways, too. I’ve no idea and there’s only one way to find out.

From my understanding of the Dean Holdsworth led Sports Shield bid, they matched all of Eddie Davies’ requirements and were then told that millions more were needed to pay off debts immediately.

They seem to me to be the most credible of all of the interested parties because they 1) Seem to have decent investment: their money comes from client investors and their slogan is ‘We make money… make money’ so one naturally presumes that this would be one of their investment projects (and a very substantial one at that) 2) they do seem to have the club at heart- Holdsworth seems to care about the cause and the likes of Amir Khan wouldn’t be getting involved just for Sports Shield to strip away their favourite club.

I don’t know whether they’re still in the mix- I hope they are because as I say, I think they look to be a good proposition.

The Bolton Wanderers Supporters Trust have also launched a bid to take the club over. They said the following: ‘In line with the Trust`s objectives and rules, which include ‘achieving the greatest possible supporter and community influence in the running and ownership of the Club`, BWFCST has been in regular dialogue with the Club`s management regarding its sale.

‘We have written to the owner, Eddie Davies. We have expressed our commitment to help lead an acquisition, in conjunction with local institutions and businesses, from whom we have received a very positive response. Our objective is to raise sufficient funding to secure the future of the Club for the benefit of the supporters, the community and the town. We would not engage with anyone who didn`t share our commitment to a community investment.

We have requested immediate access to management and financial information and preferred bidder status.’
More info can be found here: http://www.bwfcst.co.uk/update-from-the-bwfc-supporters-trust-bwfcst-steering-group/

I think the key here is that the Trust would be looking to steady the ship over the next few years and hope to stabilise the club as a big League 1/ small Championship club and then the Trust’s interim chairman said that they hope that after this a ‘white knight’ will come and move the club back up from there. I presume this means another ‘Eddie Davies’, however, hopefully one that doesn’t ruin his legacy and stop funding, leaving a trail of destruction.

The thought of fan involvement at a high level is very attractive and many have already backed this idea. It does have the backing of local businesses, but what I would question would be 1) Is there enough investment to run the club? 2) I know we can’t be greedy and expect Bill Gates to buy us and catapult us straight up to the top of the Premier League, but wouldn’t the ideal scenario be that someone comes in with fresh money, and a decent amount of it so it’s a case of repairing damage and also being able to build on this- buying a new ship, instead of having to steady a sinking one? Other bidders are proposing something more along these lines- I’m not sure how realistic this is, but it does certainly sound better! And 3) So, if they do manage to steady the ship, do we just have to hope that a ‘white knight’ comes? What if one doesn’t? Look at Portsmouth- by all accounts their supporters trust has done terrifically well, but the reality is that they’re still in League 2 and haven’t been able to return to anywhere near where they were prior to their financial turmoil. We don’t just want a group to decelerate our downfall.

There are, I believe, other parties still interested, too, but these three seem to be the biggest. Mentioned are Jonathan Disley backed bids and Korean backed bids (or maybe one backed by both of them, I’m not sure).

Anyway, we’ll see. Who would you choose, though?

 

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