Norwich fans have been getting rather excited recently about the prospect of a takeover by Peter Cullum, Britain's 40th richest man. He told the local press in Norwich that he wanted to take over as majority shareholder from Delia Smith and her husband Michael Wynn Jones, in return for sticking £20million in cash in to the club.
Today, the whole deal fell through, no doubt with lots of gnashing teeth and people complaining about Delia for good measure. But there is a really big question mark over what Mr Cullum wanted and what he actually was prepared to do.
In the first instance, he wanted to take over as majority shareholder from Delia. Delia's shares are worth more than £10 million for starters, so how would he pay Delia £10million and still put £20 million in to the club ?
The board at Norwich City have stated time and again that they are prepared to issue new shares in order to raise money. Why wasn't he prepared to just buy £20 million worth of shares so the club could instantly have £20 million ?
There are other business people in Norfolk who have used their money to help the club out. Delia, of course, stands out, but last year another couple simply loaned the club £2 million, interest free, in order to help the club out. Why, if he loves the club so much, was this option not pursued ?
The problem is that Mr Cullum has been issuing statements through the press but does not actually appear to say very much. As a Norwich City season ticket holder, i am in the dark. perhaps he did offer to do all those things, but at the moment I am happy to stay with Delia and Michael Wynn Jones. They may have a just a few million compared to Mr Cullum's £1.7 billion, but they put their cash up to help the culb out time and again with little chance of any financial benefit from it. So far Mr Cullum appears to me to be a rich man trying to steal Norwich City on the cheap.