Clowes Developments (UK) Ltd will submit a bid to buy Derby County; The Derbyshire-based property group have purchased the company that owned Pride Park Stadium from Mel Morris; Clowes have also issued an interim loan to the club which will enable Derby to start the season
Friday 24 June 2022 13:36, UK
Derbyshire-based property group Clowes Developments (UK) Ltd will submit a bid to buy Derby County after purchasing the company that owned Pride Park Stadium from Mel Morris.
Clowes have also issued an interim loan to the club which will enable Derby to start the League One season and trade while a deal to purchase the Rams is concluded.
Derby's administrators Quantuma confirmed American businessman Chris Kirchner pulled out of his deal to buy the club last week.
However, David Clowes, chairman at Clowes Developments, wants to rescue the club he supports.
"With a deadline looming and the start of the next season getting closer, we needed to do something," Clowes said.
"As a local and established property company, purchasing the stadium seemed the obvious first step. Secondly, as a proud Derby supporter, it was inconceivable to me that the club was at risk of falling away.
"We've worked tirelessly behind the scenes on the stadium purchase and loan agreement to be able to get the club going again in time for the next season. Players, staff and fans needed some good news, and we are delighted to play a part in delivering that.
"As a long-standing loyal supporter, I am personally delighted that we are in a position to be able to secure the future of the football club. This is a very proud and humbling moment for Clowes Developments."
An EFL statement read: "The EFL welcomes the announcement by Clowes Developments (UK) Limited in respect of its acquisition of Pride Park stadium, which has been a significant challenge in relation to the sale of Derby County Football Club, and that it will be submitting a bid for the football club during the course of today.
"Over the last two weeks the EFL has met daily with the joint administrators, Quantuma, as they continue their efforts to sell the club, and the League is now working closely with all parties to ensure they recognise the importance of compliance with the League's Regulations and Insolvency Policy with the objective of securing the club's exit from administration.
"The League has already commenced the process in respect of its Owners and Directors' Test, as well as an assessment of the ultimate source and sufficiency of funding to support the proposed business plan for the club.
The League understands and acknowledges that there is a desire from Derby County's stakeholders, including supporters and staff, for a swift conclusion to matters and its focus remains on the club's prompt exit from administration."
The purchase of Pride Park was completed on Friday, June 17 and all parties agreed to keep the transaction confidential until the loan agreement was completed in order to announce the recent developments at the same time.
A Clowes Developments representative added: "Clowes Developments would like to formally thank all parties involved in the deals to date. Collectively we have paved the way for a positive outcome for the future of Derby County Football Club.
"We would like to take the opportunity to thank our respective teams of professional advisers who have helped us to successfully purchase the Company that owned Pride Park Stadium, secure the loan agreement and confirm the submission of a bid to purchase the club.
"It must be recognised that great business comes from handling transactions with respect and an open mind. We are very happy to have been able to resolve the issues relating to the ground and are pleased to be in a unique position to help get the club get ready for the next season. We have made sound professional relationships to date which we hope will continue to prosper from here on out.
"Derby County Football Club are now a few steps closer to exiting administration with the hope of a new owner for the club just around the corner, an opportunity to move forward with a clean slate."