Rangers chairman King considering his options after Takeover Appeal Board ruling

By Matt T
13 March 2017

Rangers chairman Dave King says he is considering his options after being ordered to pay up almost £14million to buy out the club's shareholders.

The Takeover Appeal Board (TAB) have ruled the South Africa-based businessman was working "in concert" with three other shareholders when he launched the takeover which forced the former ruling regime out of Ibrox.

King was able to secure power back in March 2015 when he and a group known as the Three Bears - wealthy fans Douglas Park, George Letham and George Taylor - secured a stakeholding which combined equated to 34 per cent of the club's total shares.

But now TAB have ruled they were acting as a "concert party" when they made their purchase, rather than as individuals.

And it says under takeover rules, King - as leader of that group - is obliged to make an offer to buy the rest of the shares in the club's holding company Rangers International Football Club (RIFC), with the price set at 20p a share.

King has criticised both the ruling and the share price valuation.

In a statement on the Rangers Football Club website, he said: " The TAB requires that I, as the principal member of that group, must make an offer to acquire all of the shares in RIFC held by the rest of its shareholders at a price of 20p. I do not agree with TAB's much delayed ruling nor follow its logic and I shall take the appropriate time to reflect upon it and consider the best course of action for myself, RIFC and its shareholders. My view on one individual not being able to exert undue influence on Rangers is already well known.

"The complaint to the Takeover Panel was made by RIFC's former chairman David Somers as part of the old board's efforts to preserve their positions without regard to what was best for Rangers Football Club, its supporters and shareholders. Today's decision by TAB is part of the price I have had to pay for being determined to rescue Rangers Football Club from its previous regime and the drastic consequences of their actions. I do so willingly.

"The Rangers Football Club should never have become caught up in a takeover struggle. Those who placed it in that position bear a heavy responsibility.

"I do not believe that there is any substantial group of RIFC shareholders that would be willing to sell its shares in RIFC at the price at which the TAB has determined I should make an offer. Twenty pence is not a price that I personally believe represents a fair price for RIFC's shares, nor is it the price at which shares in RIFC are currently trading.

"I would anticipate that, if I was to proceed with an offer on the terms TAB require, it would be rejected by the overwhelming majority of RIFC's shareholders and therefore not receive the level of acceptances necessary to proceed. I cannot see how making an offer that is doomed to fail can benefit RIFC's shareholders."

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