Property-stripped football club bought for £1

Property-stripped football club bought for £1


The former Chairman of Leeds United has managed to snap up a League Two football club for just £1.

Peter Ridsdale, 59, has taken over Plymouth Argyle, where he has been serving as a consultant since last December.

The deal means that the club can leave administration, which it fell into four months ago.

However, the deal has effectively stripped the club of all of its property assets, including its grounds.

These property assets will be held by Kevin Heaney, a Cornwall-based property developer, and include a portion of land which has the potential for development. His supposed partners in the Gibraltar-registered Bishop International shell company being used to purchase Home Park have not been revealed.

Because of Heaney’s part ownership of Truro City, he is not permitted under Football Association rules to hold a role in the playing side of the club’s business. This is thought to be the reason why the property assets had to be separated from the football operation.  

It is common practice for a football club to separate its operations from its property, since this allows the clubs to utilise their fixed assets as security for borrowing from lenders who would be less likely to lend to a club.

In Argyle’s case though, the two entities have separate shareholders and therefore the relationship is effectively a tenancy agreement between Ridsdale’s Argyle as tenant and Heaney’s Bishop International as landlord.

The purchase price for the land and the value of the rent are not yet known, however, according to the Guardian, Ridsdale claims that it will be on an ‘affordable’ sliding scale according to what is the club’s league position.

Ridsdale will hold his equity through newly incorporated ‘Plymouth Argyle Football Club (125) Limited. He is said to have ‘sensible business plans’ for the club.

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