Prince Abdullah met with a group of US-based investors recently before reports of Sheffield United takeover talks re-surfaced this week.
The United owner, a keen fan of San Francisco 49ers, met their CEO Jed York and the chief investment officer of the NFL franchise Brano Perkovich recently, alongside Silicon Valley entrepreneur Tareq Azim.
Reports emerged today that United have held talks over a potential takeover with a consortium of private investors based in Silicon Valley, with Dozy Mmobuosi’s own bid for control of the Blades no closer to completion.
The 49ers’ investment arm owns a stake in United’s Yorkshire rivals Leeds United, which would likely preclude either Perkovich or York becoming involved in the Blades due to conflict of interest rules. But the timing of the get-together could be interpreted as significant, considering the links to the Silicon Valley region of San Francisco and the investment opportunity United’s newly-reclaimed Premier League status offers, with York, Perkovich and Azim possessing a wealth of knowledge and contacts on both sides of the Atlantic.
Prince Abdullah has made no secret of his wish to sell the Blades, despite promotion and the riches top-flight football brings, but is keen for any deal not to drag on after two previous protracted takeover sagas wielded, as yet, no results.
The group of private investors wish to remain anonymous for as long as they can but a technical advisor based in England has reportedly been appointed to smooth over any potential negotiations.
The Star reported yesterday that a number of parties have expressed an interest in taking over United, with negotiations with Dozy Mmobuosi failing to reach a conclusion as of yet. The Nigerian businessman was granted a period of exclusivity to complete his takeover of the Blades after agreeing a deal but has so far been unable to get a deal over the line, leaving Prince Abdullah recently to concede that a Mmobuosi takeover was “unlikely” - and move on to exploring other options.