THE Foundation of Hearts has joined the Tynecastle club’s administrators BDO in criticising a former bidder, whose actions, it believes, could derail its bid to complete a takeover.
In a statement yesterday, a Foundation spokesperson called Borders businessman Bob Jamieson “a Walter Mitty character” who was indulging in an “unfunded and fanciful rival bid” for a controlling stake in Hearts.
Jamieson’s bid, along with that of Angelo Massone, was dismissed in the summer when the Foundation was named preferred bidder for Hearts, as BDO decided he had no proof of funding. But he now claims to have offered £500,000 for the 50 per cent stake in the club owned by Ubig. The Foundation says that stake is worthless on its own, because if Jamieson bought it, the Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) that was agreed by Hearts’ creditors and shareholders last Friday would no longer be viable. Hearts would then go into liquidation.
But if the Foundation were able to acquire the stake the CVA could go through.
On Sunday, Bryan Jackson of BDO voiced his frustration with Jamieson. “It’s not helping the cause and it could derail it,” he said. “Whether it’s a valid offer or not, Ubig will say ‘We have our creditors to answer to, and if someone is offering us that, why are you offering us nothing?’”
Ubig was only recently placed in the hands of administrators, who have to meet their own creditors before agreeing to the sale of their shares in Hearts. That process could take months – and might be elongated further by Jamieson’s intervention.
A Foundation spokesperson said: “We would urge any third party who is attempting to place an unfunded and fanciful rival bid to reflect on the potential damage this could do to the CVA process. This is too important to the future of Heart of Midlothian to have a Walter Mitty character destabilise the progress of getting the club out of administration.”