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Last Updated: Thursday, 28 February 2008, 10:57 GMT
Business backing for LFC fan bid
Front page of Share Liverpool FC website
The website is asking supporters if they would support a buyout
The group of Liverpool fans that hopes to buy the club from its US owners has put together a team with business experience to aid its ambitions.

The Share Liverpool FC Group wants 100,000 fans to pledge 5,000 each to fund a 500m takeover move. So far it has received pledges of 47.5m.

It has now established a steering group with finance, law and marketing skills.

But there remains speculation George Gillett or Tom Hicks may sell their LFC stakes to Dubai International Capital.

'Proper financial procedures'

Those on the Share Liverpool FC legal and finance panel include Chris Talavera, a former senior partner with PricewaterhouseCoopers and chairman of Isle of Man-based Abacus Holdings, and Barrie Baxter, chief executive of business modelling software firm Brixx.

Former Liverpool players Phil Thompson and John Aldridge have also come out in support of Share Liverpool, which is also being advised by Supporters Direct and law firm Cobbetts.

We have brought together the different skill-sets in areas such finance, law and marketing that are needed if we are to succeed in this venture
Rogan Taylor

Share Liverpool is also aware, in light of DIC's reported interest, that time could be an issue for any takeover intentions it has, and has established itself on what it calls "a proper footing".

"For anybody looking to buy a football club which is valued at over 350m, and in particular one where we are asking tens of thousands of individuals to contribute several thousand pounds, we need to go through proper financial procedures," says Rogan Taylor, the founder of the initiative.

"We have brought together the different skill-sets in areas such as finance, law and marketing that are needed if we are to succeed in this venture."

The ownership model proposed by Share Liverpool is based on that used at Spanish giants Barcelona.

Waiting game

However, should the 500m be raised the US duo would be under no obligation to sell.

While Mr Gillett reportedly appears ready to consider the possibility of selling his stake, a spokesman for the Hicks camp has continually denied he is willing to sell.

DIC appear to be unlikely to make any firm approach at present until it is clearer if Liverpool are going to qualify for next season's Champions League.

Last month, Liverpool confirmed a 350m refinancing package, with 60m to be used as start-up money for the new ground in Stanley Park.

That repackaging deal, which also piled 105m of debt on the club, only lasts 18 months and the renewed takeover talk appears to be driven by the fact that Hicks and Gillett will soon have to start renegotiating their debts.

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25 Jan 08 |  Liverpool
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21 Jan 08 |  Liverpool
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06 Feb 07 |  Business


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