The good, the bad, and the unknown

During the nerve wrecking wait on a new owner one cannot help thinking about what may await us when the takeover is completed.
In my professional experience, one can quite often disregard what people say they will do. However, the info you get by studying what they have done previously cannot be overestimated. This certainly does not make it easy to “choose” one bidder before the others as precious little is there to evaluate.

The G&S track record seem to say that they are not going to gamble their own money (but then can you name one current owner that has put his own money at risk, barring Sheikh Mansour?) they will not flood the Club even with loaned money, and most certainly they will not spend flamboyantly or at a time that is, to cite Jack Sparrow, “not opportune”. So with them we seem to be reasonably secured from economic chance taking, also with borrowed money.
As runners of Birmingham they have solved quite a few of the squad problems by loans, a method we know all to well.

This “safety first” strategy, where feelings will certainly take a back seat to money, no matter what they say about being West Ham, means that they will most likely take the risk of going down rather than adding funds and endangering their investment. If that is their choice, be sure they have made certain that the drop will solve, not create, economical problems. It’s money first sporting success second, to them.

Their track record also says that they did take on a bleak looking side with financial difficulty in the Fizzy Pop and transformed them to a mid table Premiere outfit, granted by the aid of some lucky breaks. If they could do that with Birmingham, I’m sure they can do even better with West Ham.
Also, let’s not forget that sporting success of West Ham means more money to them, so if this relative success is achieved “wisely” they seek it too!
After talking and mailing to friends that has been more on top of the Birmingham situation fanwise, I realize that there are a few downsides to their ownership. The biggest problem most of the fans seem to have had with G&S is their flexible attitude towards the “truth”. They seem happy to lead people to believe that big things are going to happen and then not really living up to that “promise”. This is a way of leadership I cannot stand and that has also been a problem I’ve had all along with Duckers… The other dark side of G&S people mention is that they have “beriched themselves” at the expence of the club. If that is accompanied by some sort of success for the Club I cannot see that this would be a bigger problem than paying good wages to the right players or the right manager. One can dislike greed in sports, but it is everywhere to be found.

With Tony Fernandes we don’t have much of a clue what we wuold get. He seem like an easy going fella and I don’t doubt his good will or feelings for the Club. Being a “foreigner” myself I know that one can have a relation to the club that so strong that it at times borders to the unhealthy. If the Lotus F1 thing had had a few years of running, maybe we could deduct something from there, but his resilience or determination in projects that are not fundamental to his business is yet to be tested. At the surface it appears as there would be quite a difference between a West Ham run by G&S and a West Ham run by Tony Fernandes but then Tony is known for his low fare, low cost, low budget, low standard versions so maybe the difference is less than we expect? But then, we don’t even know how big a part he would play if the deal that he promise will bring “an owner who will make a difference and care” goes through. Rather than bankrolling stuff he seem to be known for bringing investors to projects and with the exception for Air Asia has not been the major contributor in projects so his views or passion may be as relevant as Eggy’s [shivers].

The part of the Intermarket group will, by necessity, be a short one as precious little is known about the real backers of the bid supposedly tabled today. This is also the most worrying part of that bid. Why all the secrecy? The nice interpretation is that the backer – if not successful in this bid – does not want to be associated with it. The other possibility is that the group contains people that most people not would welcome (back) as owners. The field is open for speculation, but as I said previously, business that does not stand the light of day is very seldom one that I would welcome.

Hopefully in a not to far future we will know who the devil (it) is…


TBI said...

All pro's and con's but personally I don't want G&S anywhere near the club simply because the Championship beckons with them.

Prince H said...

So who is the good and who is the ugly here??
I do not trust those sleezy porno boys (who tells the world that West Ham is crapier than crap, just to buy cheap) for one second...

Paulfake said...

This is kinda tough. Definately don't want Gold & Sullivan. I know Whu as a club is in plenty of Brown stuff at the moment, but to me that seems like going backwards.
Really curious to see who's behind the Intermarket Consortium. I'm getting visions of a Bond Villian in a volcano topped secret lair, shouting insanely about World domination( that would be nice!)
my money is on Tony Fernando, sounds like he should be a 50s Crooner. From what Ive read which is not a lot, is that he knows a great investment and knows what it takes to turn it into an Awesome investment. Surly that means investing into our club and getting us into the dizzy heights
of the league. Fortunes always hiding! But not long

Joppe - said...

I really don't want to think that I am all pro G&S. As Prince H points out they have a history that is hard to accept.

I think my take home message here was that there is one bidder where we can with some certainty predict the future, like it or dislike it. For the rest the future is hiding.

I would like to think Fernandes or Intermarket are all good guys, but that just what I like to think. At least in the case of Intermarket they have not done anything to gain my trust yet.

Hakan said...

Difficult call, but my gut feeling says Tony Fernandes. Mainly because he genuinely seems to care about West Ham.

Joppe - said...

If he gets us I'll set my hopes on Fernandes as well. I hope that he is all that he is cranked up to be - and that he goes on being just that.
However, I don't see airlines as the safest of future ventures. He made his, for football club owners relatively modest fortune, by setting up the first low fare airline in the area but now competition seem to be piling. Will there be room for them all? Will he be the one to "survive"? Will he have time to move enough of his economical foundation to other ventures? Will he be successful in those? How will we fare(!) when his airline based fortune takes a hit, and his commitment is needed elsewere? Is his commitment strong enough to keep other putative backers in the game?

G&S are, as Prince H points out, proper scumbags but stayed at B-ham for 15 years. Can we hope for the same endurance with Fernandes - it may not be his call. I'd hate another BG/Eggy like situation.

It may be very "un-bubbles" but I'd like a period of relative stability. I'd rather have a continous supply of decent beer than a temporary synthetic high!

Can Intermarket be the answer to my prayers? VERY doubtful.

Prince H said...

As I've said all the time I stil tink that Fernandes may b a part of the Intermarket group. As it seems the way Fernandes works.

Half full or half empry glass? Joppe seems to prefer the scumbags as he do not know anything (or at least to little) about the rivals. Me, I prefer the rivals as I kow too much about G&S. It may be (I agree) that Intermarket had done nothing to gain our trust yet (but teling us that they are true fans, guess many can say that), but at least G&S actually have done things to make us drop any trust at all! Isn't that worse?

Joppe - said...

Also it could also be that I want to point out that Fernandes et al. could be the next BG/Eggy. A story not really told elsewere.

And with G&S the lingerie department will flourish.

Anonymous said...

Decisions.. decisions..it has to be G&S for me..just because they are transparent and its better the devil you know.. ect..as for the other contenders there doesn't seem enough info on them..although if they have the money to take us up the league...i know ive just contradicted myself!..whoever it is just get us to mid table by may and i will happy!!

Joppe - said...

The good thing is that we've got no decision to make except for who we would like. Straumur will do the dirty work (and nomatter what the say they don't give a flying flick about the fans...)

Prince H said...

Hardly anyone can be "the new BG". I mean he and his son may have been the two most important men in the whole Island-tale. Where they first draw people to invest all their money and property and then fails to convert all the Landsbanski money (the peopl's money) into anything more than bankruptcy. They themselves go close to bankruptcy and are not able to give their investment West Ham another pennie. Even if they were promising a great future for both "their people (now leaving Island just to survive) ans the football club...

Anonymous said...

Just read about a 4th bid ..some mystery american...im next my name is...archie moneybucket from the shetlands..and i bid £4.67p...i love this game..can just see the back pages tomorrow...ARCHIE WHO?..sorry