Falkirk fans withdraw offer to buy club

The ownership saga at The Falkirk Stadium rumbles on with yet another twist. Picture: Michael Gillen
The ownership saga at The Falkirk Stadium rumbles on with yet another twist. Picture: Michael Gillen

And then there was two...

The consortium of local Falkirk supporters, business figures and club sponsors has become the second interested party to withdraw their offer for the Bairns.

Martin Ritchie. Picture Lisa Ferguson.

Martin Ritchie. Picture Lisa Ferguson.

Investor Scott Davidson cooled his interest at the weekend and this morning the local fans consortium confirmed they were stepping back after the latest delay to negotiations.

They may return to the negotiating table in the future but after more time was granted to alternative bids to supply additional information to their proposal, it proved the final straw for many of the 40 contributors who were pledging to back their bid for the club.

READ MORE: Falkirk confirm CEO Craig Campbell’s departureA statement from the group said: “Further to recent speculation we can confirm that we have withdrawn all our offers for Falkirk FC.

“Our 40+ members supported the original Back the Bairns fan ownership proposal and are disappointed that, having achieved unanimous support from shareholders at last December’s AGM, this has not been progressed by the Board as instructed by all shareholders.

Who will be in Falkirk's boardroom at the start of next season?

Who will be in Falkirk's boardroom at the start of next season?

“We have subsequently submitted several offers to acquire the MSG’s 62% shareholding, all of which would immediately inject supplementary funds into the football budget and give the 1000+ supporters who pledged to invest in Back the Bairns, a future opportunity to buy shares in the club.”

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A spokesman for the group added “Having submitted three offers by the deadline set by the Board, our members were frustrated to learn that other parties had been given extra time to provide further information. Indeed, we understand that one party was granted extra time just to submit a bid.

“This proved to be the final straw for some of our members who have run out of patience and no longer consider the Board to be acting in the best interests of the club.

“We have however notified the Board that, should the other offers prove to be unacceptable , we may reconsider our position.”

Movement on the ownership issue was expected within the next couple of days after former chairman Martin Ritchie issued a statement last week where he stated his confidence in a change over the next two weeks.

The latest delay postponed a decision until Friday, (June 7) to allow bids – understood not to include the fans consortium nor stockbroker Davidson - to supply information to ‘complete’ their plans.

During the extended period Mr Davidson, and then the supporters lost patience and stepped back from their previous interest.

The local withdrawl halves the reported interest in the Bairns from four groups to a rumoured two, with a previouslinterest from Italy also being reported in the last 24 hours.

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This morning Martin Ritchie told The Falkirk Herald: “There are quite exciting offers in the wings. If they come through the board has to give them time to see if they are feasible. It would be incorrect to shut them off completely.

“We have not pushed away any of the offers reported to have been withdrawn. We can’t ignore people who we think could make a big difference to the club.

“We still have a good dialogue with David White and Kenny Jamieson.”