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SBD Global/August 17, 2017/Finance

Auckland Businessman Offering $11M, But New Zealand Warriors Owner Wants $14.6M

Auckland businessman Paul Davys is offering around NZ$15M ($11M) to buy National Rugby League side New Zealand Warriors, but current Owner Eric Watson "wants at least" NZ$20M ($14.6M), according to David Skipwith of the NEW ZEALAND HERALD. If the two parties cannot come to an agreement by the end of the week, "the deal could be dead in the water." Davys has given Watson a deadline of Friday but a deal is "still some way off," while Watson is also in discussions "with at least two other parties keen on buying the club." Watson, however, will not be "rushed into selling." Meanwhile, the "swirling speculation" around the future owner of the club is "already having a negative impact on plans around player recruitment and sponsorship for next season." It is unclear whether Davys would want Warriors coach Stephen Kearney to remain in his job and if a "potential change in ownership will lead to a dramatic overhaul of the club's wider football staff and executive management team." Davys dismissed reports that former Warriors coach and "disgraced" former Parramatta Eels Head of Football Daniel Anderson is connected to his bid to buy the club as "absolute rubbish." Anderson was one of five key Eels officials "deregistered by the NRL for their involvement in the salary cap scandal that engulfed the club last year" (NZ HERALD, 8/16).
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