Hamer Back In The Game

Tuesday, 23 January 2001, 0:01
1 min read

The asking price for the ailing Second Division club is likely to be around £3m and Hamer – who got the boot from the club last September after refusing to let the Swans float on the AIM investment market – could return to head a business consortium.

But a takeover would not affect the club’s move from the Vetch Field to a new home at Morfa which planners have urged Swansea City and County Council to approve next Monday. Ninth Floor plc, owners of Swansea City, yesterday issued a statement ending weeks of speculation about the club’s future.

It said, “The company continues to look closely at a possible flotation or a trade sale of Swansea City FC.” The company had undertaken certain preparatory work which would enable the club to be floated on the Alternative Investment Market – but only subject to market conditions being suitable, the statement added. Ninth Floor will make a further statement at the time of its interim financial report in 21 days.

With the club believed to be losing in the region of £20,000 to £25,000 a week, the half-yearly accounts are expected to show a loss of more than £500,000. This would make it more difficult for the parent company, whose shares have slumped from 94p each to 8p, to dispose of the club. Neil McClure, Ninth Floor’s chief executive and Swansea City’s chairman, was unavailable for comment yesterday.

But Neath-born Hamer was not surprised and welcomed the announcement that the company was considering selling the club. “The healthiest thing that could happen is for new owners to be found with a love for the club, prepared to eat, sleep and breathe Swansea City 24 hours a day,” he said.

“I am watching the situation very closely.” Asked if he was heading a would-be takeover consortium of businessmen he added, “I have a strong interest. Whether or not it is achievable remains to be seen, but it would be wrong to say that I am not keeping a close eye on developments.”

He is dismayed to see the Swans struggling to stay in Division Two after becoming Division Three champions last season. He said, “If you are interested in Welsh football, you have to say that Ninth Floor is finding it difficult to continue backing the club and apparently want to find new owners.

“That should be encouraged. Let’s hope the right people take over. If it’s people like me, so be it.”

Images courtesy of Getty Images, Athena Picture Agency and Swansea City Football Club.

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