Who was Spartacus when Duff & Phelps sold Rangers Football Club? by Ecojon

Craig Whyte’s declaration he was the catalyst behind the Rangers sale to Charles Green shook Ibrox to its foundation and fired my memory into gear. However before dissecting my lonely grey cells let me jog your memory as there are a few twists and turns along the road to liquidation.

Rangers entered administration on 14 February 2012 and after various bidders dropped by the wayside American tycoon Bill Miller  was declared ‘preferred bidder’ for the failed club on 3 May by Rangers administrators Duff & Phelps who were reportedly left ‘stunned’ just five days later when Miller walked away from Ibrox.

Commenting on the withdrawal at the time, administrator David Whitehouse said: ‘Given the fact that Mr Miller did not enter into an exclusivity agreement, we informed all other known potential bidders at the time the door was not closed.

‘As a consequence of Mr Miller’s bid being accepted, three other bidders have come forward to express their interest in buying the club and these offers are being evaluated with the utmost urgency’. I am unclear whether the Sevco offer is included in the trio but the Sevco bid was accepted by the administrator on 14 May.

When questioned about reports of previous links between himself and Craig Whyte, Mr Green dismissed them as ‘complete rubbish’ and stated he had Craig Whyte ‘for the very first time’ on 1 May 2012 in London.

The emergence of the Sevco bid so late in the day was questioned by the Blue Knights bidding consortium but Green claimed a Singaporean family interested in investing contacted him on February 15, the day after Rangers went into administration.

Green said he had kept his interest out of the public spotlight and performed due diligence, unlike Miller, before he assumed preferred bidder status. Prior to becoming involved in Rangers Mr Green was non-executive chairman of Bermuda registered Nova Resources which has a Singapore office and interests in Mongolian mining investments.

The ‘due diligence’ issue is important and Miller’s change of mind hinges on it. D&P stated in a creditors’ report: ‘9.4 A virtual data room has been created for those prospective purchasers who were able to demonstrate that they have funding to enable them to perform initial due diligence on the business and assets of the Club’.

Prior to gaining access to the virtual data room parties expressing a serious interest in acquiring the Rangers business and assets were provided with preliminary information after having signed a Non Disclosure Agreement.

As soon as Miller was declared ‘preferred bidder’ he began his due diligence but in a broadside at D&P stated: ‘Until then, information had been limited to what was made available in the internet data room and questions addressed to the administrators and their staff.

‘In addition, I had preliminary discussions with the Scottish footballing authorities and limited discussions with Ally McCoist. It became clear to me that preliminary information, discussions and analysis were, unfortunately, more optimistic than reality’.

The dissing by Charles Green of the timing of Bill Miller’s ‘due diligence’ is interesting because access to the virtual data room was restricted to prospective purchasers who could demonstrate that they had funding and this raises the issue of when exactly Mr Green was allowed access to the virtual data room and what due diligence he was able to carry out as he stated he wasn’t in a position to make a bid on 3 May but was able to do so the next day when Duff & Phelps noted his bid.

Like D&P and Mr Green I confess to surprise that MSM knew nothing about the arrival of the Yorkshireman on the scene without any leaks to the press as most of the other bids leaked info like a sieve.

But the fur really started flying late last month when Craig Whyte stated on BBC TV: ‘I was the one who found a buyer – it wasn’t Duff and Phelps. My colleagues in London – when no credible buyer was coming forward – went out and used our contacts in the city to find … to put a suitable deal together.”

Asked if he was the one who had brought Mr Green to the table, Whyte answered: “Absolutely. I introduced them to Duff and Phelps.”

As might be imagined there was a swift and strong response from Mr Green who stated: ”The facts are that direct contact was made by our consortium with Craig Whyte in the first instance as it appeared at that time that his shares would have to be secured in order for any purchase of the club to progress.

‘I was not present when contact was initially made but subsequently met Craig Whyte, who introduced me to the administrator’ adding that he had ‘no previous association with Craig Whyte’ and it was ‘misleading to suggest he ‘brought us in’.

He added: ‘I was brought to the transaction by Imran Ahmad following Duff and Phelps contacting Zeus Capital in February, due to their experience in the football sector.’

So back to my Eureka memory moment 🙂  For days that last paragraph has been bothering me and even when I first watched Mr Green state the words on STV I felt there was something I was missing or failing to understand.

But what? And then I suddenly remembered there had been another story about how Mr Green got involved with Rangers in February so I went and checked and the Singaporean family investors – who I had actually forgotten about – popped-up.

Insolvency News on 14 May 2012 reveals how Charles Green had been in regular communication with joint administrators Paul Clark and David Whitehouse, of Duff & Phelps, immediately after the administration began. (14 February 2012)

Mr Green is quoted as stating: ‘We started to put together who would invest, that was the first thing. I spoke to people in the Middle East who said they would definitely be interested.

‘We then knew we had the financial resource so I contacted the administrator around four or five weeks ago. I have met with someone from Duff & Phelps regularly and they couldn’t believe nothing had leaked to the press. We weren’t in a position to make a bid at the point that Bill Miller was named preferred bidder. We came in later’.

The timing is interesting in that Mr Green states he contacted the administrator in the middle of April when he knew the money was in place but, for some undisclosed reason, was still unable to make a bid on 3 May when Bill Miller was named ‘preferred bidder’.

But the Duff & Phelps Interim Report to Creditors dated 10 July 2012 states:

‘5.37 On 4 May 2012, a late entrant into the sale process, Sevco, provided an indicative offer setting out the terms on which it would acquire the Company.’ This bid was accepted on 12 May by the administrators although I can’t see any mention in their report of Mr Green’s approach in mid-April.

I don’t know whether when Mr Green and Mr Whyte met in London on May Day if that was the day when Mr Whyte introduced Mr Green to D&P administrator Paul Clark.

On 13 May Charles Green again met Craig Whyte and signed an exclusive deal to buy Whyte’s 85 per cent Rangers’ shareholding for £1, the price Whyte paid Sir David Murray. Green also gave him an extra £1 out of his own pocket in a London hotel room giving Whyte a 100% profit on the deal. Handy pocket – I wonder if the £1 coin was wrapped in a mouse’s handkerchief  🙂 There are at least another two occasions that the dynamic due met but I do not have the dates or the business dealt with.

It would appear from Mr Green’s public statements that he could not have met any of the two Rangers administrators prior to 1 May 2012 despite being closely involved with Duff & Phelps since 15 February 2012 and having contacted ‘the administrator’ in mid April.

I take this at face value but do admit to surprise that the administrators didn’t make it a priority to meet such a potential major player as Mr Green who had been on the scene since the day after Rangers went into administration and unlike everyone else had stayed the course and had regular meetings with ‘someone’ from D&P.

In view of the connection between Duff & Phelps’ partner David Grier and Craig Whyte and the secretly taped conversation which apparently revealed Mr Grier was keen for Mr Whyte to publicly endorse the Green bid for Rangers I have wondered whether Mr Grier was also Mr Green’s ‘someone’ at D&P. In so doing I make no suggestion of anything unprofessional or otherwise in anyone’s behaviour.

However, the tape-recorded conversation apparently places the meeting between Grier & Whyte between 4 May when the Sevco bid was made and 12 May when it was accepted as the taped conversation stresses the advantages for Craig Whyte endorsing the Green bid although personally I would place more hope in a lead lifebelt.

Worth noting that on 4 May 2012 Mr Green became sole director of SEVCO 5088 LIMITED with a DISAPPLICATION OF PRE-EMPTION RIGHTS noted on 14 June – the date the CVA Proposal was rejected by HMRC.

All in all I really have wondered whether there were two separate bids going on: 1) Involving Mr Green and his Singaporean family who may or may not be on the current Rangers shareholder list and 2) A later bid backed by Zeus Capital whose website in June 2012 stated:

Acquisition of Rangers FC

‘Zeus Capital, the Manchester and London based corporate advisory firm have worked in conjunction with Charles Green to complete the £5.5 million acquisition of the business and assets of Rangers Football Club’.

Looking at things from the outside the dual-bid solution would actually make sense of what appears to be some contradictory statements and it may well be that Green had problems raising the capital for the bid after having been alerted to the profit potential of buying Rangers.

It might even make sense of Craig Whyte claiming that he had found the buyer and put the various parties together. In my scenario CW sold the idea of a Zeus – Green package to Duff & Phelps. Hey ‘Doing Deals’ that’s what business is all about isn’t it? Or perhaps D&P came up with the idea but needed a third party to bring Zeus and Green together.

The possible flaw in my thinking is that Green has stated that Ahmad came to him in February asking him to be involved because Zeus was thinking of putting a deal together. Green said he refused the approach but Ahmad came back to him and they started working on putting a deal together. It may be Green refused Ahmad’s initial approach because he was already involved with an Indonesian family from 15 February the day after Rangers went into administration.

I also don’t know why Green then changed his mind and I am unclear as to whether Ahmad’s second approach (date unknown), which was accepted, was still under the Zeus umbrella or a freelance effort. However, Ahmad appears as Managing Director of Zeus Capital in April 2012 and subsequently became a Rangers director and currently is listed as holding £2.2 million in club shares.

Green says Ahmad introduced Craig Whyte to him and we also know that Green and Whyte met four times in London but we don’t know everything that was discussed or transacted although it is quite possible that Agent Whyte was in spy mode so we could yet be privy to the conversations.

We do know Mr Green confirmed meeting D&P administrator Paul Clark at a top London Chinese restaurant in May although I am unclear on the date. Green also states that his fellow Rangers director Ahmad had ‘loads of meetings’ with Craig Whyte but we don’t have dates or what was discussed at the meetings although again the possibility of tapes existing must occupy some minds.

It also begs the question – what were the meetings about as I find it hard to believe Ahmad spending all that time and effort at a critical time for the consortium just on buying Whyte’s shares which weren’t really regarded as critical by D&P as mechanisms existed if Whyte played the reluctant virgin to block any sale deal.

But, returning to my dual bid theme, perhaps the Ahmad activity reflected Zeus priorities rather than those of Charles Green and it might be fair to postulate that Zeus Capital might have a wider range of financial interests and alliances than Green.

Ahmad founded the London firm Allenby Capital Limited in 2009 which been listed as an adviser and broker in several announcements by Singapore-based Nova Resources Limited which Green chaired before resigning in January 2012.

In my musings I don’t suggest any wrong-doing on the part of Mr Green, or anyone else, because age and job-stress might affect memory especially as French retirement dreams fade and the ethereal strains of Zadok the Priest recede only to be replaced by a booming lambeg drum easily mistaken for the tolling of a bell.

Posted by Ecojon



Filed under Administration, Charles Green, Rangers

49 responses to “Who was Spartacus when Duff & Phelps sold Rangers Football Club? by Ecojon

  1. tizzer

    it’ll all end in tears

  2. tizzer

    not from me you understand, i just can’t stop laughing. ooh I wish it could be liquidation every day

  3. JohnBhoy


    With the Craigie bone connected
    To the Grier bone,
    And the Greir bone connected
    To the Duff bone,
    And the Duff bone connected
    To the Charlie bone,
    And the Charlie bone connected
    To the Imran bone,
    And the Imran bone connected
    To the Hughes bone,
    And the Hughes bone connected
    To the Zeus bone,
    Oh dem bones, dem bones
    Gonna walk aroun’,
    Oh dem bones, dem bones
    Gonna bring Charlie down.

  4. Don’t think there was ever a dual bid, If memory serves me right, green entered the scene after Miller walked away.
    This so called ‘Singaporean family investors’ could easily have being one of the many trust that are now part of the consortium. It seems, if he ever was around from the start, it makes you wonder why a bid was put in much earlier in the process. Or it could be that they them-self may not have had enough money around to pull off the bid. And so, a few months wasted trying to form a consortium to gather enough money together till Zeus came into the picture.
    A lot of things green has said since he stepped on the scene have being either half truths, misleading truths, and lies to a certain degree. He has never made any attempts at being transparent, nor revealed any real information regarding his backers(the consortium).
    But would he really admit Whyte bringing him to the table? of course not, not when his IPO is right around the corner and with his fantastic sales performance so far. Why risk it.

    • ecojon

      @ Sena

      I can only repeat what Green said and that is that he was involved from 15 February the day after Rangers went into administration. He has made other statements saying he was involved with the administarors consistently over a long period.

      These are public statements and the investigations taking place into D&P are bound to throw-up exactly what connections existed between Mr Green and D&P and the timetable involved.

      You state: ‘It seems, if he ever was around from the start, it makes you wonder why a bid was put in much earlier in the process’ but I wonder if you meant to say: It seems, if he ever was around from the start, it makes you wonder why a bid wasn’t put in much earlier in the process’.

      That to me is self evident because you let the opposition slug it out and leave the last man standing before showing your hand.

      I agree that there was an initial shortage of money and that may have delayed things and may also have caused Zeus to be brought on-board later although perhaps they were there from the start although that would mean that they and Green couldn’t raise £8 million between them which really is chickenfeed in that line of work.

      Green wasn’t risking anything – he was faced with MAD when Eagle Whyte landed with his taped conversations and I would think that anyone within a million miles of the rangers deal would be twitching wondering who and what might have been taped. And still are!

      In any case I’m not that sure that he has denied as rigidly as you suggest and you have to look at his words. I find ‘transaction’ very interesting and wonder exactly what it means in Old French or Yorkshire dialect. And I also find ‘misleading’ even more misleading and wonder why he doesn’t call Whyte a bare-faced liar.

      I do agree with you that the only transparency has come with a few names thrown out but by and large the beneficial owners remain hidden despite all of the early promises of transparency. Still it will be interesting to see what the prospectus contains.

      • Maggie

        Great work Eco,
        You’d think he’d have “people” who could keep track of what he says to whom and when,so he’d at least appear to have some semblance of competency about him.
        ……..easily mistaken for the tolling of the bell……Brilliant.
        Ask not for whom the bell tolls, it tolls for thee Charlie.
        Apologies to Ernest Hemingway via John Donne.

        • ecojon

          @ Maggie

          I keep getting the impression you are an English teacher or lecturer and I mean no disrespect by that as one of my English teachers was probably the most important influence in my life, not just in academic terms, but in terms of coming to understand how to love words and derive pleasure and knowledge from them as well as the faint possibility of wisdom.

          He truly was an optimist and managed to enthuse his classes by the way he made words jump off the pages to form almost a hologram of the story. And I can assure you that back then no one had ever heard of a computer let alone a hologram 🙂

          • Maggie

            “You might well think that.I couldn’t possibly comment”
            You will no doubt recognise this famous and oft quoted line from
            the fictional politician Francis Urquhart in the fantastic House of Cards
            television series.

    • @Sena

      Disagree with your comment, sorry.
      From very ealry on I I mean when this was put together, in my personal opioion, by the main puppetmaster DM. He brought in fall guy CW and all would have been well if RFC had qualified in either european tournament at least until the end of 2011/12. It would have been a struggle but that extra cash would have seen them through.

      CW last September realised that without that £ RFC had no way of making it in any form.

      The plot was reworked and I will bet a sizable amount that CW was working with others putting together the rescue on a CVA.

      Look at the events as we have do here and see where they all come together.

      D&P being “appointed” the preferred company from CW and maybe one other important personal closely linked with the club in the recent past.

      D&P were retained on “fixed fee” o the basis of quick in and out. One of the many failings they achieved.

      They delayed the CVA burning cash like there was no tomorrow and at every turn the were “managing” the purchase price DOWN.

      This played directly into the hands of CG because they were either having problems raising the finance, which I believe was the case, remember they struggled to raise the $5.5m. At the same time all the dealings with SFA/SPL were going on to ensure the seamless reinstatment of RFC back into the top league, another stitch up.

      CG has, in my opinion, been anything like transparent or honest in his numerous public disclosures and the only consistant has been his inaccruracy of truth, taking reality out of context, and stating one thing and never following through with it.

      This situation has been manipulated from the outset and thankfully now we will be able to see proper authorities investigating the full background to the situation and bring EVERY one involved to book.

      Look at the true timelines and work it through, it really does go ALL the way back. With futher disclosures you never know who or what CW has taped, maybe all the way back to his dicussions before he bought the operating company from DM.

      Interesting times ahead I am sure.

      • ecojon

        @ michaelk1888

        I totally agree that this whole thing can be traced back much further but even just taking it back to February 14 was as big a task as I could face 🙂

        To be fair I think a lot of the earlier stuff will come out via various investigations in any case and I do hope that Wee Craigie has tons of tapes of compromising situations so that the whole thing can be put together at some stage.

        I think a lot of us have a very good idea what went down and what lies ahead but having solid proof will be very very satisfying.

  5. Cregganduff

    Charles Green, Craig Whyte and David Grier. There is a smell of ancient fish coming from their activities (something rotten in the State of Ibrox). Still the smoking gun has not been uncovered yet. But Mr Grier should be up to his neck in the usual with the judge, after his lies have been exposed, so he may be the weak link. Maybe after tying himself up in even greater lies he may be prevailed on to tell truth, do the dirt on the other two, and try to save his own neck.

  6. Gortnamona


  7. Budweiser


    Love it! Fair tickled my funny bone.

  8. mick

    great read ecojon a little of topic but there is brecking news the scotland manager has stepped down how sad that the sfa the most messed up team of suits in the world can do this it saddens me as it is the suits that should step down not the manager

  9. Martin

    Good work Ecojon!

    The memory is working well it seems 🙂

  10. mick

    greens a front for ticketus which is zues and octopus there all tax scammers no bid was ever going to get in the way of the plan to fleece the bears off shore galore crooks in suits ,the FSA and serious fraud squad should step in its criminal the whole lot of it ,no bids were considered just green and whtyes and ticketus

  11. Econ,
    I think your memory is fine. Green has said so much he will come unstuck although I am surprised that the MSM are not pursuing your directional theme as you have made some excellent points in respect to the timing scenario.
    I loved the comment about Zadok the Priest although Charles could just get the Ibrox announcer to play it next week and technically he could leave after hearing the song played at the ground although not in a Champions League scenario.

    • ecojon


      I suppose he could put a request into one of the radio stations as well 🙂

    • 100bjd

      “I am surprised that the MSM are not pursuing your directional theme”

      Shurely shum mishtake? True to form, MSM will as ever comment on this well after the fact (and after reading about it on blogs such as this,) while simultaniously claiming their cut-&-pasted article to be an “exclusive”

  12. mick

    @ecojon to think that ogivie and smith and co can make a judgement when there not fit and proper there selfs is sick big wow levien lost a few points were no brazil ffs sack the board not the manager

  13. mick

    @maggie ave been listening to the metamorophisis via you tube adio storys its well intrguing the word its self is well halloween stuff ,pure gregor the spider for any1 wanting to listen to it and find out the meaning of the word listen to the link below

  14. mick

    @maggie am doing the trial next some1 highlighted it to me the bank worker.

    • Maggie

      Just checked in,very impressed mick,Kafka not really a spot of light reading,or indeed listening.:-)
      You’ve got to love a blog that goes from Kafka,to Spartacus,to Ozymandias,to Godfather parodies( JohnBhoy ) to the Jimmy Buffet classic Margaritaville,to your favourite mick,Gratuitous alienation……. the list is endless.Many thanks to Mr Mc Conville,his blog has informed and educated us all in so many fields.
      When you’re finished with Kafka mick try John Steinbeck. Start with
      “Of Mice and Men” it’s very short so wouldn’t take long to listen online,but have a box of tissues handy, I know real men don’t cry ( well apart from
      Sevconians,but who can blame them ) but ……. I won’t spoil it for you.

      • Maggie

        Add to the above list……” Epistemological break”and “French Marxist
        Philosophy”from the Stuart Cosgrove piece for TSFM.
        Think epistemological break even beats gratuitous alienation as a phrase to impress friends and family with,though how it could be worked into a
        conversation,I have no idea.Bet Charlie Green could do it tho’ as it comes from a French source 🙂

      • mick

        @maggie men do cry with joy its a unstoppable emotion a go throw it everytime a see celtic lift a cup the tears will be flooding down my cheeks for a longtime .John Steinbeck al keep him in mind for the weekend ,the kafka book had a werid end to it a wondering if this will be a sign to come for sevco ???

  15. mick

    Money laundering ……….now that would create a severe environment including blast, thermal pulse, neutrons, x- and gamma-rays, radiation, electromagnetic pulse (EMP), and ionization of the upper atmosphere

    am not 1 for circulating roumours but when theres secret backers and tax discrepinces and secret tapes it all makes newco toxic in a business sence we just dont know whats going to come out

    • mick

      king from the late 90s early 2000 is mentioned as a launder via murray will this be highlighted in the future sars would be well intrested

    • k

      Hi Mick, “now that would create a severe environment including blast, thermal pulse, neutrons, x- and gamma-rays, radiation, electromagnetic pulse (EMP), and ionization of the upper atmosphere” Worried by the Apocolypse? Dont trust bain capital to wash your readies? Then why not try the all new Craig whyte tinfoil hat, protects from all the above with added stealth anti rader technology. New from madoff(4% guaranteed) industries.
      (Disclaimer, the above may not be true).

  16. mick

    Imran Ahmad/Rangers/AC Ancona
    Ancona played the 2009–10 season in Serie B, finishing 17th despite 2 points deduction due to financial irregularities in the season and avoiding relegation, but eventually filed for bankruptcy and was unable to join any of the lower divisions. The club, however, managed to submit application for a place in Terza Categoria, the lowest level of the Italian football league system.[6] Their application was accepted on 13 September 2010, as they were granted a playing ground by the city administration.[7] However, they were still lacking players and a manager and were subsequently forced to forfeit the first four games of the season. According to FIGC regulations, this led to the club’s removal from the league and they are now expected to undergo liquidation.
    Imran/Allenby advised AC Ancona

    • Maggie

      Now that IS interesting,wonder in what capacity Imran/ Allenby advised Ancona.Maybe they “caught onto something” there that gave them cause to think that the Rangers’ administration/liquidation situation would be profitable for them.

  17. 🙂 nice one Mick thats a bit of new news, wonder what else is out there and how similar that will be to the eventual outcome down Govan way.

    chucky Bhoy has been awful quiet this last week, wonder if he has his memory back and is remembering all these comments and dates he did or did nt meet with CW. I’m very sure CW will have a diary of the exact date time and place to assist CG just in case…….now he’s just tongue tied……that would be a first for him!!

  18. mick

    @michael check the bear on bear action on tsfm tweets on the cosgrove story comments thats were a sorced it from and wiki

  19. JohnBhoy

    Dear Just Joan

    My name’s Charlie. I’m a plain man ‘n a like tea ‘n bacon ‘n eggs. This shifty guy a know got a dodgy car fae another dodgy geezer. The first dodgy geezer never paid the tax on it ‘n the second dodgy geezer says, bugger that, two can play that game. A thought, right, a wan some a that and got a payday loan an’ gave the second dodgy geezer’s mate a backhander tae take it off his hands an’ a gave the second dodgy geezer an iou for the piece o’ junk, ‘n bob’s yer uncle, a oan the bloody wreck! It’s no roadworthy but ma family, god bless them, love it. A even painted it orange fir them. The polis noo tell me it was knocked off and that there wis lots of loans on it that were no paid off! A says bugger that, ‘n got ma mates tae swap it fir anither wan, but a liked the registration plate, so kept that. Ma family still think it’s the same wan, god bless ’em. Thing is, a need tae sell it tae cover the payday loan and whit’s left I’ll keep thank your very much, but the second dodgy geezer is greetin’ that a owe him money.

    Wit should a dae, Joan? I’m a plain man an’ as a say, a like tea ‘n bacon ‘n eggs. Oh, ‘n there’s these bampots keep sending letters tae the papers ‘n grassin’ me up. Whit dae a dae Joan? Oh, aye, forgot tae say, the second dodgy geezer has got sticky oot eyes. Looks like a fuckin’ tadpole ‘n that. An’ another thing, ma mechanic hasnae a clue how to keep it roadworthy until a sell it. Think he’s on a YTS scheme or somethin’.

    Dear Charlie,

    We here at this august institution recommend that you a) give the car another coating of orange paint b) sell it on ebay and finally c) emigrate.

  20. @Johnbhoy Quality Quality Quality

  21. Are we going to get a review of the Compo Green comments at Ibrox on Saturday, as reported by the Gersnet website? He’s at war with SFA, SPL, SFL and has refused to sign the SKY deal thus ensuring the SPL goes bust in 2 years (erm what about the 5 year deal?). Oh and he’s bought a car park for £1.3 M from the bank. £20 M turnover this year and £40 M next year. Fill your boots…


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