Administrator Bob Young has told the Sentinel that a fourth bidder has expressed interest in taking over the club and that the potential sale of the club will not be hurried as “there is no rush this time.”
Young told the newspaper: “We’ve talked to another potential bidder this week, so that makes four, along with Keith Ryder.
“The three we already knew about are undertaking due diligence – an evaluation of the club’s assets – while the fourth has asked for details and signed a non-disclosure letter.”
In a somewhat bizarre explanation of the due diligence process, Young said he was confident about the other bidder because they used well-known firms of solicitors commenting: “All four have good intentions, as far as I can tell, and they are all using well-known firms of solicitors. That’s a good sign and usually indicative that someone is serious about making a bid.
“I had never heard of Keith’s solicitors before we started dealing with them.”
Young added: “The deal is still there for Keith [Ryder] if he wants it,” he said.
“He has had genuine family health issues, but if he produces the money then I’ll be happy for him to proceed. The trouble is, the longer it drags on, the less likely it seems.
On the possible timelines for a takeover Young said: “We initially tried to rush a deal through so that we’d be ready for the start of the season, but that hasn’t happened.
“So as long as we are fit to trade, which we are, then there is no rush this time.
“We are focusing on running the club as effectively as we can at the moment and are not so worried about a time scale.
“It could be as quick as a few days, or it could be a few weeks, but we are having a good, long look at it.
“As long as a sale is achieved before April, then we are anticipating everything will be OK, although we obviously don’t want to be there for that long.”
“We’re happy to let the existing management of the club continue, we’re just a bit more ‘hands-on’ with the accounts than we were.”