Would-be Everton owners commit to funding £500m stadium construction

A US consortium has committed to funding the completion of Everton FC’s £500m Bramley-Moore Dock stadium as part of their takeover bid.

The consortium is spearheaded by former Manchester United and Chelsea chief executive Peter Kenyon, and includes Minneapolis-based Talon Real Estate chief executive Maciek Kaminski and US businessman John Thornton.

The group is reportedly in advanced talks to buy Everton FC from Monaco-based Farhad Moshiri, who has been the majority shareholder at the club since 2016.

According to The Telegraph, the consortium has committed to funding the remainder of the Bramley-Moore Dock stadium’s construction as part of its proposed takeover.

Funding the construction has caused Everton FC several headaches. Last month, the club reached a £500,000 settlement with Liverpool City Council after the the council requested compensation for its work on a failed proposal for a stadium financing plan.

The proposals had formed part of former mayor Joe Anderson’s “invest to earn” strategy, with the council exploring financing options for three years between 2016 and 2019.

The initial plan would have seen the council borrow money at a lower interest rate to then lend to Everton, which would have repaid the loan with interest. However, the club opted to take out financing elsewhere to pay for the 52,888-seater stadium.

The £350,000 legal tussle came after Everton dropped a commercial arrangement with the main sponsor of the new stadium due to its links with Russian president Vladimir Putin.

USM Holdings, owned by Alisher Usmanov, secured a £30m option on the naming rights to the £505m Bramley-Moore Dock facility in January 2020, with the club stating at the time that the money would be used as equity for the project.

Contractor Laing O’Rourke was officially appointed to build the stadium earlier this year, having already been signed to complete enabling works at the site.

Under the agreement, Laing O’Rourke will deliver a programme that includes the completion of any outstanding enabling works, the full construction of the stadium and public realm, and remedial works to the Grade II-listed Hydraulic Tower, which will be brought back into public use.

The first ‘super-column’ of steelwork was installed at the site at the end of May. More than 12,000 tonnes of steelwork will make up the framework of the stadium, which is set to be completed in 2024.

The next major development on site will be the construction of four tower cranes, one for each quadrant, which will aid the installation of steelwork at height.

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