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SBD Global/April 25, 2014/Finance

Regional Political Parties Agree To Guarantee Loan To Keep ACB Side Bilbao Basket Afloat

Spanish Basketball League (ACB) side Bilbao Basket "can see a solution," according to Alfonso Herrán of AS. Bilbao players on Wednesday "released a statement saying if they did not receive payment within 48 hours, they would take unilateral action, including leaving the club or legal action." Politicians "took notice." The five businessmen that form Bilbao's alternative managing committee convinced the Basque Nationalist Party (PNV) and the Basque Country's Socialist Party (PSE) to "provide a guarantee of a credit" of €500,000 ($691,000) to allow the club to "temporarily escape paralysis." These parties "needed the support" of the Spanish Socialist Workers' Party (PSOE) or the People's Party, and this "arrived this morning from the PSOE." The money will arrive via Spanish bank Kutxabank. It now "seems that the club will survive until the summer, but the future has to be covered." PSE spokesperson Alfonso Gil said, "We are going to ask for a viability project and this should feature public and private collaboration. The institutions will make corresponding contributions. It is important that in a competition that is privately sustained, a team like Bilbao must be sustained in large measure by a private initiative" (AS, 4/24).
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