Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Surely ENIC wouldn't sell right now would they?

According to today's Daily Mirror, Spurs could be sold to another Dubai-based investment syndicate (not DIC who tried to buy Liverpool, but the group that sniffed around Man City before Shinawatra got his hands on them). It is alleged that the group have already approached Joe Lewis, the ENIC mogul, who may be keen to sell as he has recently lost heavily following the collapse of Bear Stearns earlier this year.

In fact, according to my research Joe Lewis paid $860 million in cash to purchase 7% of Bear Stearns in September 2007; two months later he'd increased his stake to 9.4%. But by March this year he'd lost about $1.1 billion when the brokerage firm was purchased in a straight stock swap with JPMorgan.

The Mirror believes we're currently valued at around £250 million as we're "now established as a European performer having qualified for the UEFA Cup for the third year running". Incidentally, this is down from their £400 million valuation in December 2007. Whatever we're worth today, we'd fetch a lot more if we could break into the Champions League.

Now I'm not the most optimistic of Spurs fans and I can't see that happening for another year at least, but I do believe that Levy thinks it's possible. A major factor in appointing Ramos was because the club felt they needed someone who could get Tottenham into Europe's premier competition, which they didn't believe BMJ could do. Time will tell if that decision pays dividends.

But whilst the existing ownership of Spurs is focused on finishing in the top four on a regular basis I don't believe now is the time to sell, even if Lewis' wealth has taken a bit of battering in recent months.

In terms of the fan's view of ENIC, I'd argue that on the whole they're doing pretty well. They are willing to spend big bucks and they are, in theory, tackling the limited stadium capacity issue. The biggest black mark is obviously for the disgraceful and inhumane way they treated the sacking of Jol. But to Levy's credit he did go some way to explain the truth and set the record straight once the dust had settled.

So to bring things back to this morning's paper talk, no I can't see ENIC selling out right now. Can you?


jon.a.blackham said...

Joe Lewis won't sell because he needs cash - he doesn't.

At the time Bear Stearns went down he assured the club that they wouldn't feel any ramifications.

Just the paper trying to fluff up the story.

£250m? It seems like a steal. Anyone who bought the club now would have to come up with funds to build/extend the stadium...

Levy wants us in the CL as part of his legacy before he sells.

Hopefully the CL isn't far off - but Levy and ENIC have been good for us... Will be a sad day when a non-Tottenham fan takes over.


Greekos said...

Never under estimate businessmen of Joe Lewis and Daniel Levys pedigree. They arnt stupid and if a very good offer comes in then they won't turn it down. If a bid for £350 mill plus they ensure extra cash is available to build a new stadium then they would be stupid to turn it down. From their point of view anyway. Personally I'm not Levy's biggest fan but you cant argue with the financial stability that he has brought the club and how efficiently it is being run. Also with the smart appointment of Ramos and backing him all the way in the transfer market so far has been encouraging. I would like them not to sell until we are established in the CL but in this crazy world that is Tottenham Hotspur FC you never really know what is going on round the corner!

Anonymous said...

you still think they run these soccer clubs for anything other than monetary reasons - how wonderfully naive.

Anonymous said...

I think that some peopl have failed to understand the basic nature of the modern Spurs 'enterprise' - it is my understanding that, much like under Alan Sugar (whose financial rectitude seved Spurs from a fate worse than death, Man Citeh in Div 2, or Leeds, IMHO). Joe Lewis isn't pumping his personal fortune into the club. it is being 'forced' to run itself.
That is my understanding, so, if I am right, Joe Lewis's only interest in selling Spurs would be, will it make the team more successful? Not, will it make me subsequently richer/dig me out of a financial hole? Indeed, i have heard Dan Levy basically say just this - we will only sell if the buyers are going to improve the club and team.