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SBD Global/November 28, 2012/Franchises

Hearts Chief May Keep Tynecastle Stadium And Lease It Back To New Owner

Scottish Premier League Heart of Midlothian Owner Vladimir Romanov is "considering keeping Tynecastle Stadium and leasing it back to Hearts when he agrees to sell his majority shareholding in the club," according to Barry Anderson of the SCOTSMAN. A debt repayment plan may also be included in any deal with a new owner as Romanov and his Ukio Bankas Investment Group "plan their exit strategy." Hearts Dir Sergejus Fedotovas, who works closely with Romanov in Lithuania, revealed said that UBIG "could retain ownership of Tynecastle and lease it to the club each year." Repayment of Hearts’ £24M ($38.5M) debt "may also feature heavily as part of a takeover." Romanov and his associates "are willing to discuss selling Hearts," although they are "reluctant to name their price outright." So far, Foundation of Hearts Chair Alex Mackie has had three different bids rejected. Italian businessman Angelo Massone also had a £4.5M ($7.2M) offer denied. Fedotovas said, "Apart from the terms acceptable to current owners, the buyer will need to demonstrate he is a fit person to run the club and he has a realistic plan for running the club successfully" (SCOTSMAN, 11/27).
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