The proposed multi-million pound takeover of Newcastle United took a huge step forward today as a significant legal document was released via companies house.
Mike Ashley has had Newcastle United on the transfer market for a number of years but, despite numerous negotiations with different parties, no sale has ever been agreed.
Now though, with the Saudi Public Investment Fund and Amanda Staveley’s PCP Partners, as well as the Reuben Brothers, it seems that could be about to change.
This morning, documents emerged that are signed by both Mike Ashley’s side of the deal and Staveley’s side of the deal that show the talks are indeed very real and at a quite advanced stage.
The document shows that Ashley and his lawyers have agreed to loan a sum of £150m to Amanda Staveley’s company.
The ‘registration of charge’ document was filed on April 8 and is essentially the security a company gives for a loan.
Alongside that, the documents seemingly show that Staveley has paid a £13m deposit to Ashley.
Mark Douglas of the Newcastle Chronicle said: “Well if this deal isn’t done now, it’s difficult to see when it will be.
“The documents represent a legal framework by which Mike Ashley will transfer the shares for NUFC to PCP Capital Partners – the investment fund Amanda Staveley runs. It details a deposit to pay for Newcastle, and a loan agreement (bizarrely struck by Ashley to Staveley).
“Alongside other activity related to the Reuben Brothers and Staveley – their lending money to her through a holding company – this is the buying party getting their ducks in a row to complete the deal of the century from a Newcastle perspective.”
If the deal was to go through, it would mean the Saudi Arabian royal family would have an active investment in Newcastle United.
Obviously that will be met with some serious backlash. Below, you can watch a video from BBC Newsnight all about the Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman – who is the head of the Saudi Public Investment Fund.
As for the loan, it could simply be Ashley’s way of fast-tracking a deal, but it remains very much up in the air.
While I wouldn’t quite call for cans just yet, if I were you I’d be getting them on ice ready to be sunk. In fact, I have done…