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Prospective Everton owners 777 ‘confident’ in ability to fund takeover amid fresh doubts

Work continues on Everton's new stadium on Liverpool's docks/Prospective Everton owners 777 'confident' in ability to fund takeover amid fresh doubts

Everton’s prospective owners, 777 Partners, have moved to fend off fresh doubts about their financial viability as the Merseyside club’s desperate need for funds was reinforced in their latest accounts.

While Everton presented a grim picture of the club’s immediate future by revealing losses of £89.1 million for the year 2022-23, the US-firm awaiting approval to buy-out majority shareholder Farhad Moshiri dismissed more questions about their ability to bankroll a Premier League club.

A report in the Financial Times states that regulators in the US states of Utah and South Carolina are ‘moving to force five insurers to cut their exposure’ in 777 Partners.

That prompted a response by the firm reiterating that they have the necessary resources to meet the obligation set out in their proposed purchase of Everton.

The 777 statement read: “As it relates to the proposed acquisition of Everton FC, 777 Partners is confident in its ability to fund both the transaction and the club’s three-year business plan, the details of which it has provided to the Premier League as part of its ongoing process of regulatory approval.”

It is the latest in a series of fire-fighting responses by 777 since they agreed a deal with Moshiri in September.

Majority shareholder Farhad Moshiri has long been looking to sell the club
Majority shareholder Farhad Moshiri has long been looking to sell the club - Getty Images/Alex Pantling

There has been a steady flow of information querying the true extent of their wealth, where their money is coming from, and how they could usher in a new era of financial security that Everton desperately crave.

Equally unclear is what will happen to the Merseyside club if the Premier League blocks the sale, as Moshiri has long made it clear that he wants out and monthly cash injections by 777 have prevented Everton falling into further disarray over the last few months.

The need for clarity on whether the takeover will be approved becomes ever more urgent.

On Sunday evening, Everton published the accounts which explained why the club faced a second Premier League charge for breaching profit and sustainability rules.

The losses were double those posted in the previous financial year and their net debt rose to £330 million.

It means Everton’s reported losses over the last three accounting years stands at £255 million. The current Premier League rules say the limit over that period is £105 million.

Everton were handed a six point penalty by the Premier League for overspending in 2021-22. Despite insisting they are in the process of reversing years of what looks like financial mismanagement under Moshiri, the latest figures indicate they were in a worse situation in 2023.

Now the club is awaiting the outcome of the latest PSR investigation, a verdict anticipated in the coming days. It comes with Sean Dyche’s team in the midst of a terrible run on the field having matched a Premier League club record last weekend with no win in 12 games. That’s the worst sequence since the inglorious reign of Mike Walker in 1994.

Among the more worrying conclusions in the latest accounts recording figures for the year until June 2023 is a sober warning about Everton’s ‘ability to ‘continue as a going concern’.

The same strong language was used a year earlier.

As they did 12 months ago, the Everton board insist they are “confident that funding will be secured or refinanced”.

Everton have consistently offered mitigating factors for their financial strife, citing the costs of the new stadium under construction on Liverpool’s docks, the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and the consequences of Russia’s war on Ukraine which forced Moshiri to cut all commercial ties with his former business partner, the oligarch Alisher Usmanov.

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