After a disappointing season and what has been a turbulent transfer window in the summer, things are getting interesting at Anfield road, Liverpool.

A workman applies gold leaf to the Shankly gates outside Liverpool's Anfield stadium in Liverpool, northern England August 2, 2010. Chinese businessman Kenny Huang has launched a bid to acquire control of Premier League club Liverpool from its unpopular American owners, a source close to the deal said on Monday. REUTERS/Phil Noble (BRITAIN - Tags: SPORT SOCCER BUSINESS)

Kenny Huang has been reportedly linked with taking over Liverpool F.C for an alleged £350m. Huang is the head of Hong Kong-based investment company QSL Sports, which are claimed to be backed by one of the biggest sovereign wealth funds in east Asia. Apparently, they do not value Liverpool more than its debt, which means that at the current valuation, the share holders walk out empty handed! Liverpool F.C currently owes around £237 million to RBS in principal and around £100 million in the form of interests and overdrafts. Huang reportedly made a proposal to RBS, offering to clear all debts on the club in return for full control at Anfield , discounting any equity value that the club holds. However, for the  deal to go through, the Liverpool board – represented by Chairman Martin Broughton, managing director Christian Purslow and commercial director Ian Ayre,  along with Tom Hicks and George Gillett –  has to approve the proposal with a majority.

What is interesting here is the fact that the Hong Kong Mogul has chosen to go public with his interests in Liverpool F.C. Ideally, the deal could have been sealed behind closed doors, but  its pretty much clear that after getting a nod from RBS , Huang is trying to corner the Americans by gathering fan support through the media buzz. Sources close to the suitors also claimed that Huang is dead serious about building the new stadium, and wants to conclude the deal before the end of transfer window, so that he could bring in reinforcements as good as Lionel Messi.

Unhappy Liverpool Fans with their Protest against Liverpool Owners George Gillett and Tom Hicks Liverpool 2009/10 Liverpool V Sunderland (3-0) 28/03/10 The Premier League Photo Robin Parker Fotosports International Photo via Newscom

Tom Hicks and George Gillett took over the club in Febuary 2007 for a reported  £218 million, and further invested another £144 million; a major part of this deal was financed by debts.  If Huang has his way, the Americans, who value the club at £600 million, could walk out without a penny.  They would most definitely want the valuation to go up, which explains why a  Syrian businessman, Yahya Kirdi, emerged as a possible buyer after Huang made his interests known.


Gillett and Hicks understand that they do not have the financial muscle to drive the club forward. They cannot reinforce star players into the squad, the only way to win trophies, and prevent the valuation from going down. The whole of Europe is under financial turmoil, and there are not many people knocking at their door. It is indeed possible that in case they duck the Chinese offer, there may not be any buyers meeting their valuation. This could actually put the club into distress and cause losses, leave alone profit. Kenny Huang could not have done better in forcing the Americans to sell. He already has approval from RBS, while the fans are cautiously evaluating his promises. English clubs are still a value proposition, given that the promoters could sustain an eight figure annual loss  for the next five years. Huang has the financial backing and if he could prove that in front of the F.A , he could be the sugar daddy Liverpool require !

  • Kris Sreekanth

    The takeover looks imminent. LFC and many potential suitors have submiited thier bid for a possile takeover to the Premier League (acc. to the new tough transfer rules, suitors have to submit their proposals to the PL 10 days prior to the takeover).

  • Sarad

    Guys, a little too early to write anything like this? My answer:- yes.

    1) RBS has denied having any discussions with potential buyers.

    A spokesman for bank is quoted by The Herald as saying: “The guy [Huang] contacted us and we put him onto the club and the advisers. We have not had negotiations with him at all, there is a due process for any bidder.”

    2) Today Huang has distanced himself from the buy-out after “Kirdi” the Canadian has come-out in pubic and said “talks are in advanced stage”. Nice work from PR groups of both of these to float it on the back page of all dailies.

    3) Today The Telegraph claims that a New York-based private equity firm, the Rhone Group, have rejoined the race to take control of the Merseyside club

    4) PL’s head Scudamore in an interview today said – he knows nothing about the any bid being close to being negotiated. In that case – according to the new PL rules, a check on ownership is to be done. They don’t want to repeat burning their Pompy finger again. For this “good man” check – they need at-least 10 days.

    So I would say – wait and watch, atleast for 10 more days.

  • Sandeep

    I doubt Kenny Huang will be able to takeover LFC. A public disclosure of this nature is almost always a cover up for a deal that is probably in progress behind the curtains. A news report in the guardian now states that Huang’s consortium is denying any bids to take over LFC.

    Whatever the case maybe, i am personally not expecting too much from this take over. Yes, it will reduce the debt burden, and yes in order to convince the fans, Hodgson will be given some financial freedom in order to strengthen the team during the December transfer season. But what LFC needs is a european owner who shares the passion for the game.

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