Americans Tom Hicks and George Gillett’s beleaguered stint as the owners of Liverpool could be ending as soon as next month in the wake of Royal Bank of Scotland moving the club’s loans into its toxic-assets unit.
The owners were given until 6 October to refinance their own personal loans, however that date is quickly looking like it will be the end to Hicks and Gillett’s reign over Liverpool. RBS’s decision to move the co-owners’ debts to its Global Restructuring Group are being heralded as a clear sign that the loans will not be extended to the duo.
A previous attempt to refinance all debts in June by Hicks and Gillett failed when the club’s board declined their offer to secure their loans against US-based assets. Now with the move of the co-owners’ loans to RBS’s “bad bank”, the lender has made it clear that it is taking a firmer stance with the American club owners.
According to an insider source, the loans have been removed from the corporate banking department and placed into the Global Restructuring Group. Analysts have speculated that RBS will look to sell England’s most successful football club soon after the 6 October deadline has passed. Many believe the bank will seek to offer the club at a discount price in order to sell it more quickly.
According to account books for the club dating to July 2009, Hicks and Gillett owe RBS £237.4m. Additionally, the two American owners are personally liable for tens of millions of pounds in debt through other various commitments made to the bank and the club through companies based both in the UK and overseas. Last year, the owners were reported as owing £145.3m, but it is forecasted that this year’s refinancing five months ago significantly increased that amount.
source: moo news