`

Morecambe chairman confident new owners will bring stability

Peter McGuigan
Peter McGuigan

Morecambe chairman Peter McGuigan believes the club is heading for stabler waters following the arrival of new owners.

Bond Group Investments Limited were announced as the Shrimps’ new majority shareholders on Tuesday morning.

The sale of the majority shareholding raised more than the odd eyebrow, given it was the third time it had changed hands since September 2016.

That particular merry-go-round started with Diego Lemos’ ill-fated reign and G50 Holdings’ subsequent arrival, not to mention Joseph Cala’s attempt at purchasing a controlling interest last year.

“There is no asset stripping going on as has been suggested,”McGuigan said when addressing supporters’ possible cynicism.

“The money is there and that will fund the club as well as pay off the debt.

“Their lawyer has confirmed that the funds are there – and they are because they paid the wages last month and the month before.

“In contrast, with Lemos and Cala, they didn’t have a penny, which we didn’t find out until afterwards.”

If the announcement of the deal came out of the blue, Bond Group Investment Limited’s background understandably raised a few questions.

A London-based company, they have no previous experience in football clubs which means the Shrimps’ current board will remain in place and running the club’s affairs on a daily basis.

“The talks started around November time but, obviously, these deals take a little time to be completed,” McGuigan said.

“The EFL were obviously very conscious of things so they took their time and made sure everything was okay.

“Someone I know brought them to the table because they had been looking at a couple of other clubs.

“They are investors who have been together for quite a few years and who work on various projects.

“They have never been in football before which I think is a good thing so they can look at things with fresh eyes.

“They have quite a lot of contacts in youth football but there is a lot about the club that appeals to them.

“There aren’t many clubs in the Football League who own their ground for example so there are a lot of opportunities there.”

Given the club’s recent off-field history, the Shrimps’ fans could be forgiven for taking this latest development with more than a pinch of salt.

However, it is planned for them to meet the new owners sooner rather than later.

“We will have a fans’ forum in the next few weeks,” Mr McGuigan said.

“That means everyone can get in and ask them questions; there is no date as yet but, hopefully, it could be as soon as the week after next.”