Takeover rejected by owners
Coventry’s owner has rejected an ‘extremely low bid’ from a consortium led by former chairman Gary Hoffman in the latest attempt to take over the club.
The Sky Blues have been owned by investment management company SISU Capital Ltd since 2007.
The current rent deal at the Ricoh Arena with Premiership rugby club Wasps expires in the summer.
The English Football League has set a deadline of April 2 for Coventry to confirm where they will play next season.
With Mark Robins’ side pushing for the play-offs, currently just a point behind sixth-placed Doncaster, the Sky Blues could yet find themselves promoted to the Championship – if facing a somewhat uncertain future behind the scenes.
Coventry revealed they were at risk of expulsion from the Football League if no agreement is reached before an EFL Extraordinary General Meeting on April 25.
SISU, meanwhile, has said it will drop a long-running legal case against Coventry City Council in return for their help to relocate to a purpose-built new home and also wants Wasps, who own the Ricoh Arena, to allow the football team to remain there until a new one is built.
Sport minister Jeremy Wright has called on all parties to work together to make sure Coventry remain playing in the city next season, having chaired a meeting last week to look for a way forward.
A delegation from The Sky Blue Trust and other concerned Coventry fans are set to head to the EFL and SISU’s London offices on Thursday to highlight the issues.
A statement from the consortium led by Hoffman, published by the Coventry Telegraph, said a revised offer including ‘a higher cash offer up front than the £7million that was turned down last time’ had been rejected on Monday ‘without any discussion’ – as had their request to meet with SISU chief executive Joy Seppala.
The consortium urged SISU ‘for the sake of CCFC and its supporters’ to undertake ‘constructive dialogue’ over the club’s future.
Coventry’s owners, though, maintained the latest offer had ‘little credibility.
‘ A statement from SISU, obtained by Press Association Sport, said: ‘We note the recent comments regarding a ‘bid’ for the football club.
Given the football club’s current league position, this seems to be little more than an effort to undermine and distract from the club’s on-pitch performance.
‘For the avoidance of doubt, yet again this was an extremely low bid.
It has little credibility and as usual provides no proof of funds nor confirmation of the investors/consortium members (as had been included in the past).
‘ A brief statement from the League One club read: ‘The ownership of the football club is a matter for the owners SISU, and as such we will not be providing any comment.’