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Last Updated: Wednesday, 4 July 2007, 18:13 GMT 19:13 UK
Rival suitor eyes Leeds Utd bid
Ken Bates
Ken Bates faces a fresh challenge to his Leeds United plans
Businessman Simon Franks has said he is ready to buy Leeds United.

Although no exact financial details have been released, Mr Franks said his offer was substantially higher than that of the club's chairman Ken Bates.

The announcement by Mr Franks, a former investment banker, comes a day after HM Revenue & Customs said it would mount a legal challenge to Mr Bates' plans.

HM Revenue & Customs says Mr Bates' plan to exit Leeds from administration does not give enough cash to creditors.

'Absolutely committed'

Mr Franks aims to buy Leeds through his Redbus investment vehicle.

"We are absolutely committed to gaining control of Leeds United and to rebuilding the club," he said.

"We have already told the liquidator that we will cover short term liquidity problems and that will be standing by our bid and will increase it given certain information.

"Our bid was significantly better than Ken Bates' and we are in a position to move very quickly if we are offered the right commercial terms."

With club debts of 35m, Mr Bates wishes to pay Leeds' creditors just 8p in every 1 to take the club out of administration.

HM Revenue & Customs, which is owed 7.7m in unpaid taxes, will get its preliminary court hearing on Friday.

Mr Bates has already warned that the cost of the legal action could force the club into liquidation.

HM Revenue to challenge Leeds Utd
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05 Jun 07 |  Leeds United
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04 Jun 07 |  Business

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