Morecambe's proposed takeover comes under scrutiny

Sarbjot Johal’s proposed takeover of Morecambe FC has come under the microscope after he looked to be closing in on a purchase of the club.
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The 20-year-old, who has been variously described as a ‘tycoon’ and ‘a wealthy investment mogul’ was first linked with a buyout last month.

Last week saw the release of a club statement in which Shrimps’ co-chairman, Graham Howse, revealed that Johal had purchased equity in the club and would become the new owner – subject to passing the EFL owners and directors’ test.

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Johal has attended a number of matches at the Mazuma Stadium after the club was prepared for sale by its current owners, Bond Group Investments, in September 2022.

Morecambe FC's proposed takeover has come under the microscopeMorecambe FC's proposed takeover has come under the microscope
Morecambe FC's proposed takeover has come under the microscope
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He is chairman of private equity firm Sarb Capital, as well as the founder of non-alcoholic drinks company, Vitanic Limited, and is listed as a director of another beverage company, Lovely Drinks Limited.

However, it has been questioned how the takeover is being funded given Companies House documents show Vitanic’s accounts as of May 2021 had £74,822 worth of capital and reserves, while Lovely Drinks’ most recent figures showed £80,925 of shareholders’ funds.

As for Sarb Capital, the vehicle through which Johal purchased equity in the club, Companies House indicates it was incorporated in 2022 though its LinkedIn profile suggests it was formed three years earlier.

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Morecambe were unable to comment when approached by The Visitor, while the EFL said no comment could be made on ‘change of control matters’.

We also contacted Johal to ask if he would be willing to be interviewed but no response was forthcoming by the time we went to press on Monday afternoon.

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