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Last Updated: Friday, 19 March, 2004, 16:16 GMT
Leeds takeover completed
Leeds' debts are thought to be around 100m
Leeds United's immediate future is safe following a 30m takeover by a locally-based consortium.

Under the terms of the agreement with major creditors, Leeds Utd plc and a holding company were placed into administration prior to being wound up.

The move allowed the assets and reduced debts to be taken over by Leeds Utd's new holding company Adulant Force Ltd.

The consortium is led by new Leeds chairman Gerald Krasner, and includes former player Peter Lorimer.

Krasner takes over from old chairman Trevor Birch, who staved off the threat of administration and is expected to stay on to facilitate a handover.

THE NEW LEEDS LEADERS
Gerald Krasner - chairman
Owner of Bartfields accountants
Peter Lorimer
Former Leeds Utd player
David Richmond
Son of Geoffrey, former Bradford chairman
Melvin Helme
Melvyn Levi
Simon Morris

"The club is off life support and can now move forward," Krasner told BBC Radio Leeds.

"We've been tying up the legal work with over 100 documents to sign and we are now looking forward to the future.

"The club is now solvent and we're now looking forward to retaining our Premiership status."

The takeover was completed after major creditors - including bondholders M&G, Teachers and MetLife, and Gerling Insurance - agreed to accept about 20p in the pound on total debts believed to total 100m.

Repayments to other creditors like the Inland Revenue have been restructured, but will be honoured in full.

Former managers Peter Reid and David O'Leary agreed to big reductions in the outstanding contract settlements they are owed by the club.

The consortium have looked at all the possibilities and one of them is that Leeds could be relegated
Peter Lorimer

Under the terms of the takeover, the consortium will buy the club's Elland Road stadium and Thorp Arch training grounds, which will be operated by Adulant Force.

A sum of 20m will pay off debts, with another 10m used as working capital.

Leeds are anchored at the foot of the Premiership table and are battling to avoid the drop into the Nationwide League.

But board member Lorimer insisted that relegation would not affect the takeover.

"It would be a major blow, but the consortium have looked at all the possibilities and one of them is that Leeds could be relegated. Plans have been made should that happen and it won't alter anything."

Former Southampton manager Gordon Strachan
Would Gordon Strachan want to come out of retirement?

Regardless of where Leeds play next season, the new board is thought to be keen to try and tempt former Southampton boss Gordon Strachan out of retirement.

In that event, current caretaker manager Eddie Gray would be found a role within the club as a reward for his work during the club's difficult period.

The new board also includes David Richmond, son of former Bradford chairman Geoffrey.

Geoffrey Richmond acted as an advisor to the consortium and revealed that Leeds' highest-earning player pulls in 3.5m a year, and that contracts worth a total of 11m will expire at the end of this season.


WATCH AND LISTEN
The BBC's Sally Nugent
"Gerald Krasner has been quietly working for months to save Leeds United"




SEE ALSO
Q&A: What now for Leeds United?
19 Mar 04  |  Business
Leeds confirm wage deferral
11 Mar 04  |  Leeds United
Richmond admits Leeds talks
02 Mar 04  |  Leeds United
McKenzie resigns at Leeds
15 Dec 03  |  Leeds United



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