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Ticketus pulls out of Blue Knights bid for Rangers

Ticketus has pulled out of discussions with the Blue Knight’s Consortium over a deal to buy Glasgow Rangers Football Club.

Ticketus says it was unable to finalise satisfactory terms of agreement for its investors with the Blue Knights around restructuring its ticket purchase agreement.

Octopus Investments owns Ticketus, a London-based firm which provided Rangers with “working capital” in exchange for future season ticket sales, through its protected EIS.

In February, Glasgow Rangers’ administrators Duff & Phelps said it was unclear on the whereabouts of £24m advanced from Ticketus to Rangers’ account.

It later clarified that £18m of £24m advanced had been accounted for and was used to pay off Rangers’ debt to Lloyds Banking Group when the club was taken over by current owner Craig Whyte last May.

AWD Chase de Vere and St James’s Place have both said they have a small number of clients invested in the Octopus protected EIS caught up in the Glasgow Rangers’ administration.

Earlier this month, it emerged that over half of the money owed to Ticketus by Glasgow Rangers would have been wiped out if the Blue Knights Consortium had taken over the club under the proposed terms.

Blue Knights Consortium is one of a number of people involved in the bidding war for Rangers FC. Others include Bill Ng’s Singaporeans, Rugby Union Sales Sharks’ Brian Kennedy and American truck Tycoon Bill Miller.

Bidders have been put off by a number of sanctions placed on Rangers such as delays to the administration process as well as a 12-month signing embargo handed down by the Scottish Football Association and fines totalling £160,000.

Ticketus says its main duty is to its investors and protecting their investment in the Club.

A statement from the group says: “Regrettably over the course of this week it became impossible to reconcile these interests with the proposals put forward by the Blue Knights as the terms of a deal became clearer.

“There have been a number of challenging issues that have emerged over the course of the last month, including delays to the administration process,  the SPL’s ruling and the recent news from the SFA, all of which have affected the value of the Club and added complexity to the bidding process and our discussions with the Blue Knights.

“After much hard work from all parties involved, we are deeply disappointed that we are unable to secure an agreement with the Blue Knights. We do not wish to attach any blame to the failure of these talks as, while there have been frustrations on all sides at times, we believe all parties have been acting in good faith to agree terms.”  

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