Walker Morris advises on takeover of Reading FC

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The Sports Group at Walker Morris has further demonstrated its international reach by advising a consortium from Thailand on its purchase of Reading FC.

The takeover was announced by Sir John Madejski, following confirmation from the Football League, ending his 25-year reign as sole club chairman.

The Championship club will now be owned by three major investors: Khunying Sasima Srivikorn, who led the consortium and becomes co-chairwoman alongside Madejski; Khun Narin Niruttinanon and Khun Sumrith Thanakarnjanasuth.

Madejski said:

“After months of tireless hard work and a lot of speculation, I am very pleased to say that Reading Football Club’s future has been resolved.

“Over the past year, since the Zingarevich family left, we have engaged with a number of different prospective investors, but we have now succeeded in finding who I believe are the right people to take this club forward.

“I am honoured to be staying on as co-chairman at the Club I love, with Khunying Sasima Srivikorn as my fellow co-chairwoman, Khun Narin Niruttinanon and Khun Sumrith Thanakarnjanasuth.

“I cannot speak highly enough of our new partners from the time we have spent together so far. They have shown great professionalism, perseverance, patience and diligence and, on a personal level, our relationship is excellent and long may that continue.”

Reading FC needed new investment when Anton Zingarevich failed to see through his own takeover.  It left the Club in millions of pounds of debt and key players had to be sold to pay a tax bill.  At that point the Thai consortium stepped up their interest and agreed to release  funds prior to  the takeover being ratified.

David Hinchliffe, Head of the Sports Group at Walker Morris commented:

“We are delighted to reach a successful conclusion to Reading FC’s takeover.  Our clients have demonstrated that they are keen to work with the existing management team and have the best interests of the Club and the fans at heart.  The investment will provide a solid platform for the Club to build on and achieve its aspirations”

Reading FC has reached the Premier League on two previous occasions, almost qualifying for Europe and twice playing at Wembley Stadium.

Madejski added:

“Last, but by no means least, I would like to personally thank every one of our loyal supporters for their unstinting dedication and understanding during the long time it has taken us to resolve this situation at the club.

“We have started this season well, which is testament to all of our staff and players here. There are reasons to be optimistic on many fronts, and we now move forward with a renewed vigour and high hopes for a bright new future.”

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