Have we recovered from Friday yet people?
Okay, the burning question for many fans on Friday afternoon following news of the arrival of both Nassef Sawiris and Wes Edens centred around our cash flow issues and Financial Fair Play problems.
With that answered to the best of my ability, I’ve also seen a number of fans questioning whether or not this is a takeover in its true sense, or as per the type of language used on the Official Site announcement, whether this was purely a ‘significant investment’ of capital into the club for a minority share of ownership.
Reports have suggested that the buy-in was for 55% of the club, thus making Sawiris and Edens majority shareholders dependent on the agreement between them – I’m assuming Sawiris is the majority player here but I don’t know for sure, it’s just implied.
Despite the flowery language of the Official Site announcement, the key sentence is:
“At the same time, Dr Tony Xia will become Co-Chairman and remain on the Board.”
This isn’t purely investment on a minority basis, otherwise, you wouldn’t need to include that line. The statement would say something akin to ‘Sawiris and Edens now join the Board’.
It’s been very very tough two months. Nothing changed my love and commitment to AV even the Chinese economy policy made things of the most difficulty. Hope new partnership with Naseef and Wes, we can continue our efforts to bring Villa to where it belongs. #VillaInMyHeart
— Dr. Tony Xia (@Dr_TonyXia) July 20, 2018
This is further backed up by the clubs’ Who’s Who page – Click Here.
It states that Sawiris has now been appointed as our Executive Chairman – he holds the power. Edens and Xia are Co-Chairman, with Brian Little continuing as Advisor to the Board.
If the buy-in wasn’t at a majority level, it’s conceivable that Sawiris and Edens would come in as Co-Chairman – I believe there’s a similar structure in place at Crystal Palace following their investment the other year.
But a minority buy-in would not see one of the new investors take up the ‘Executive Chairman’ role – again that goes to the power player in the arrangement, and the ‘Executive’ tag in basic means the Chairman is now our Chief Executive Officer in effect and running things.
To me at least, that all points to Xia selling a majority stake in the club.
— Rongtian He (@VillansHo) July 20, 2018
We can all speculate as to why it’s a majority buy-in at this stage – it’s fruitless as all the proposed reasons for me could easily contain a nugget of truth. The bottom line is, I’d be incredibly surprised if this didn’t become a full takeover in due course. Sawiris seems to be in total charge and in time he and Edens will no doubt appoint their own people once things at the club have settled and the wobbly period is behind us.
Our emergency Board set up including Luke Organ, Sharon Barnhurst and Rongtian He (better known as Ho) have all now resumed their normal roles within the club I would assume as our new dawn begins.