Will Silent Stan Launch A Takeover?

Stan-KroenkeThere are two sides to a football club viz, footballing side and the financial side. Both sides are inter dependent on each other and are mutually responsible for each other. Every big club in the premiership has been taken over by foreign investors, off late. Glazers took over Man Utd and Roman did so for Chelsea. The latter started up some kinda of revolution in English football and money took center stage in English football. He pumped in atrocious amount of dough and reaped instant benefits. Arsenal have been the only big club who have remained away from this money splurging part of English Football – Courtesy: Mr. Wenger. In spite of us not spending big money, we have remained more than competitive in the cut throat competition that is prevalent in EPL. But things might change – Courtesy: Silent Stan.

An 11Gunners insight into what might be the consequences if things really change..

The following statement was released by Plus Markets this morning:

On 4th November 2009, Arsenal Holdings plc (the “Company”) received notification that on 4th November 2009 KSE, UK, Inc (“KSE”), a company controlled by Stan Kroenke, a Director of the Company, acquired 200 ordinary shares of £1.00 each in the Company (“Shares”), at a price of £8,500 per Share.

This ensures that Silent Stan has acquired 29.9% stake in Arsenal FC and is only 0.09% away from a having to make a formal takeover. The rule book says that

  • Once someone reaches a 30% shareholding in a company they are deemed by the Takeover Panel to have “effective control” of the firm and must then make an offer for the remaining shares
  • The price offered cannot be lower than the highest price the offerer has paid for shares in the firm in the previous 12 months
  • If, after the offer has been made, the offerer has more than 50% of the shares they are deemed to have been successful in their takeover and legally in control
  • If an offer is unsuccessful and the 50% shareholding level is not breached then the offerer cannot come back with another takeover attempt for 12 months, unless invited to do so by the company
But according to sources it is highly unlikely that he will touch 30% anytime soon. The theory behind this is that if he launches a take over bid anytime soon then he will have to pay £8,500 per Share for anither 20% of shares that he acquires from the market. He is just consolidating his position for the time being and will launch a take over bid but not anytime before 12 months. He is raking up the shares just to consolidate his position in the wake of competition from other major share holders. The other major shareholders are Uzbeki tycoon Alisher Usmanov, who holds a stake of about 25%, Danny Fiszman, and Lady Bracewell-Smith. Lady Nina Bracewell-Smith is still an unknown player and nobody has an idea as to which side she will take in this showdown between  Usmanov and Kroenke. Though Fiszman has sold shares to Kroenke  previously, but then said in March he had no plans to sell any more. This makes Lady Nina Bracewell-Smith the king maker if and when a bidding war takes place. This race has been on for some time and to get a perspective of whole thing click here.
What happens if he actually manages to takeover Arsenal is what the talk of the town is at the moment. He is a very astute businessman and he has been in sports business for too long. He owns sports teams like Colarado Rapids and Denver Nuggets and has stakes in other teams as well. So, he is no Roman but a serious guy. He wont buy Arsenal for fun and that is assuring for the fans. The most important things that he should refrain from doing is get involved in footballing side of the club. And we believe that he is smart enough to do so. The positive thing that he might bring to the table is muscles in financial terms for us. Spanish Sharks like Barca will think twice before tapping up players like Fabregas.
And if there is a takeover saga to take place then please please please do it when the season gets over because it might bring distractions on the field. This season we are in with a real chance to win some silverware, so please don’t hamper our chances.
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