By Bill Gleeson, Daily Post
The details of the deal that would see Thailand’s Prime Minster invest around £60m in Liverpool FC remained shrouded in secrecy last night.
Liverpool chief executive Rick Parry met Thaksin Shinawatra in Bangkok yesterday, (pictured), and is expected to return to Merseyside with a deal to put to the Anfield hierarchy by the end of the week.
Most football finance experts believe all the signs point to an issue of new shares rather than a share sale by current majority stakeholder, David Moores.
Issuing more shares would mean all the money raised from Mr Thaksin would go to the club to use to rebuild its squad or contribute to the cost of the proposed new £80m stadium at Stanley Park.
Liverpool’s latest balance sheet shows the club currently has 15,000 authorised but unissued shares being held in reserve.
The board could choose to sell these shares without the need for the approval of other shareholders at an extraordinary general meeting.
A £60m deal to buy 30pc of the shares implies a price per share of £4,000, which is close to the price the club’s shares have traded at in recent years.
The issue of 15,000 shares would take the total number of shares in issue to 50,000.
That would leave the Thai Prime Minister with 30% and David Moores, who owns just under 18,000 shares, would see his stake diluted from 51% to 36%. Mr Moores and his family, which used to own Littlewoods, has been involved with the club for half a decade.
James Dow, a corporate finance expert who has previously advised Everton and Barcelona, said: “With more than $1bn, this is the sort of benefactor that any club would want.”
Rogan Taylor, head of the football industry unit at the University of Liverpool, said: “They need this money. They want to build a stadium and revamp the squad.
“They are about to sell players and they won’t be getting back the sort of money they paid for them. They paid £12m each for Diouf and Heskey and they won’t be getting £5m for the pair of them.”
Steve Morgan, the wealthy founder of housebuilder Redrow who has harboured a long-standing ambition to take control of the club, has implied he might yet make an improved offer. He has previously offered £50m to take control of the club, but appears to have been out-bid by Mr Thaksin.