Exclusive: Second American consortium show interest in Preston North End takeover

Deepdale Deepdale
Deepdale | Getty Images
Reports surfaced over the weekend regarding interest from Miami in buying PNE

An American consortium has shown an interest in buying Preston North End, the Lancashire Post understands.

Over the weekend, it was reported that ‘a mystery Miami-based group’ were targeting a takeover of the Lilywhites. It’s understood that there has been no contact made with North End, by them, as of yet. But, it is believed that interest has been shown by a New York-based private equity firm - who are looking at a couple of other English football clubs too. Amid suggestions of a £50m asking price, it’s thought that a fee in the region of £45m could be deemed acceptable.

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Since owner Trevor Hemmings CVO died in October 2021, the support of the Hemmings family has continued at Deepdale. Trevor’s son and chairman, Craig, assumed responsibility straight away and has backed manager Ryan Lowe financially, ever since. The 2022/23 accounts showed £10.6m of investment, with a further £6.7m of interest free loans injected since. The family’s stance, of being open to offers from the right party, has always remained the case though.

Back in January, director Peter Ridsdale said: "For those who think we should be opening the doors at Euxton and looking for someone with an oil well under their arm, we keep opening the door and having a look - but there is nobody there. And if anybody were to be interested, we would always welcome them. But again, I would stress that under Financial Fair Play rules - even if a multi-billionaire turned up tomorrow, you can only lose so much money ever year and we are right up against that at the moment.

“Their support is totally unwavering and it is outstanding. I think they are under-appreciated and people should take one step back and have a look at 'What would happen if?' What they are also saying, very clearly, is if somebody turned up at the door and said 'Here is how much cash we've got; this is what we'd like to do with the football club' - and the belief was they could sustain it and take it forward, they would be welcomed with open arms. Nobody is here in a sort of bunker mentality, saying 'leave us alone, we don't want to talk to you'."

In 2022, American businessman, Chris Kirchner, had a bid for PNE accepted. But, his period of exclusivity - as preferred bidder - expired and he returned to trying to buy Derby County. In the end, Kirchner did not go through with either deal and in January 2024, he was found guilty of wire fraud and money laundering.

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