The Peter Cullum Conundrum

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.


Anonymous said...

Nich, I don't think that the Callums of this world are really passionate about the game. They're merely looking for their next investment.
I think the Old Trafford fans were suspicious of the Glaziers when they first moved in.
Clearly Delia and Michael ARE passionate about Norwich, as we saw in Delia's return to tv earlier this year with her excellent new series.
But don't listen to what the other top tv chefs had to say about it. As we know theres a lot of envy in the world of British tv cookery shows.
But the series did give us an interesting insight into the goings on at Norwich Football Club.


Norfolk Blogger said...

John, I've bought Delia's how to cheat at Cooking book and think it is great.

We are working parents with a young child, we want to eat good food, not ready meals, and want a varied and interesting diet and Delia's book has given us some great shortcuts to having good meals quickly.

We don't buy tinned mince (as she suggested as an option), preferring proper mince cooked from scratch, and we tend to use fresh veg rather than frozen, but we have used frozen mashed potato.

Some snooty chefs did "dis" her, but forget that in their own restaurants they but in ready made things like pastry, but they don't consider that to be cheating.

Alexfromnorfolk said...

The trouble with this story is reality.

Norwich City F.C is not worth all that money. The club is in Debt so its value must be set against that.

The fact that Delia (an ex Ipswich supporter!) is passionate about City is the problem. The club is in decline. It has no money, no quality players and a board so desperate to hold on to power.

Doncaster is confused to what football really is and the supporters are the only ones showing true support.

I fear that more players are to leave and if City's current stock is worth little more than a million for the best players, soon the buying capacity will be alike to those struggling at the wrong end of the league.

Infact that is where City ended and I bet that is where they will stay.

As a Town fan I am aware of the problems that are caused by digging holes. We were able to clear the debts, have investment and stability. I doubt that Marcus Evans has Ipswich at heart, though he does have his business interests to look after.

Passionate fans do not always make good business leaders.

You dont get 1.7 billion by being an idiot.

Norfolk Blogger said...

Alex. Delia is NOT an ex Ispwich supporter. She was asked, as a Suffolk celebrity to wear an Ipswich hat, scarf etc, for some publicity back in 1978 and did so. She is on record in recent years as saying she supports football across the region and she personally wished Ipswich well diring their UEFA cup run, but to claim one photo makes her an Ipswich fan is uuter twaddle.