Newcastle United’s long-running and highly public Saudi Arabian Public Investment Fund backed takeover may have fallen through, but that does not mean that Mike Ashley is out of options to sell the club. There have been suggestions that other suitors are interested in taking the reins at St James’ Park, with Clear TV’s chief executive Henry Mauriss heavily touted as next in line to take over.
While he may not have an eye-watering sovereign wealth fund worth $300b connected with his bid, Ashley has been attempting to sell the Magpies for some time. Without the complications of piracy and human rights abuses, Mauriss could be the man to get a takeover over the line, and Luke Edwards has suggested the ball is in the American’s court.
What did he say?
Writing in the Telegraph, Edwards said: “Henry Mauriss does not have a public profile, even in the USA. But the bid – funded by the company not himself – is genuine and things have been progressing behind the scenes.
“The big difference with this bid, compared to previous ones, is Mauriss wants things to be done in private.”
The journalist continued by adding: “The idea is for Mauriss to be in charge before the start of next season, but that means working to a strict time frame which raises all sorts of potential problems.
“The onus, though, is on Mauriss. He has been interested since November but backed off when the PIF bid became public. If he really wants it, it is up to him to do the deal. Many others have got this far and then disappeared.”
According to Edwards, Mauriss has been interested in Newcastle for some time, and with the Saudi Arabian led deal currently off of the table, this could be the time for the American to make his move. After the Kingdom’s bid to take a majority stakeholding at Newcastle was stalled they pulled out of the prospective big to takeover the Magpies.
The Daily Mirror revealed that a source close to Mauriss had suggested he is “desperate” to become the owner at St James’ Park, but only time will tell just how desperate the media mogul is to part with his cash.