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Gazidis Endorses Stan Kroenke's Increased Role With Arsenal
Published April 1, 2009
|Gazidis Believes Kroenke's Increased Role
A Long-Term Value Proposition
STAN THE TOP MAN? Kroenke acquired his shares from Arsenal investor and BOD member Danny Fiszman, but Gazidis indicated that the transaction will not have an "impact on the day-to-day running" of the club. Gazidis: "It's business as usual. It's a transaction between two Board members, both of whom believe in the philosophy of the Club, the self-sustaining philosophy on a day-to-day level." Gazidis said of Kroenke's role with Arsenal, "He has developed a good relationship with the other members of the Board. I think the fact that Danny has felt comfortable selling his shares to Stan speaks volumes. This is somebody that shares the same philosophy as the current board and will be influential as we go forward" (ARSENAL.com, 3/30). However, an Arsenal source said, "This is a major play en route to a scenario where Stan is the major shareholder in an Arsenal regime run by a Kroenke-Fiszman partnership" (London INDEPENDENT, 3/31). But Fiszman asserted, "I have no current intention to sell any more of my shares in the Club." Fiszman added, "I believe that Stan's increased holding is a positive development for the Club" (ARSENAL.com, 3/30).
BRACE YOURSELF: ESPN SOCCERNET's Phil Holland writes Usmanov "may not regard the current climate as the best time to launch a takeover" of Arsenal, and whether his relationship with Kroenke "develops into a full blown civil war looks set to depend" on Bracewell-Smith, who retains a 15.9% stake. The question is "whether Bracewell-Smith is prepared to sell and, if so, to whom will she choose to deal?" Will the "argument that saw her leave the board play into Usmanov's hands, or will she stay loyal?" (ESPNSOCCERNET.com, 4/1).
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