Global search underway for stadium funding

Friday, 14 September, 2018 42comments  |  Jump to last
Everton have turned their attention to the private sector as they seek to assemble a funding package for the proposed new ground at Bramley-Moore Dock.

The club have one offer on the table from Liverpool Council to provide £280m of the estimated £480m project via a loan secured against the club's assets that would have the added benefit of netting the city £7m a year for the next quarter of a century.

However, new Stadium Development Director, Colin Chong, says that other avenues are being explored for what he describes as "complex" funding requirements for the new stadium.

"We have a number of options available to us," Chong is quoted as saying by the Liverpool Echo. "Liverpool City Council is one of those options and there are other opportunities we are exploring too.

"Any deal we do will be the best deal for Everton Football Club."

Meanwhile, Chong says that feasibility studies are being carried out to determine the final capacity of the Bramley-Moore Dock stadium, an issue that is among the more emotive for supporters.

"It is important we get this right," he said, "and there are a multitude of factors we need to take into consideration, such as planning, size, mass, the look and feel of a stadium set in Bramley-Moore Dock.

"It is a lot more complex than just picking a number that feels right."

Chong promised further consultation of fans on the process but did not provide a concrete timescale for when a planning application for the new construction will be submitted, except to say "as soon as possible".

He explained: "It will be a full planning application and, therefore, we need to make sure that everything in it is absolutely correct.

"This too is a complex process. We're reliant on third-parties and a lot of the work simply can't be rushed."


Reader Comments (42)

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Bobby Mallon
1 Posted 14/09/2018 at 07:23:45
Can someone explain why a man worth over £2 billion, and who supposedly will make a killing if he was to sell the finished ground, doesn't just use his own money? — then all the profits would be his and his only. Why would you let someone else have a look-in?
Stewart Lowe
2 Posted 14/09/2018 at 07:47:57
Loving the naivety, Bobby. ☺ Brilliant!!
Tom Evans
3 Posted 14/09/2018 at 07:54:41
Here we go!
Phil Sammon
4 Posted 14/09/2018 at 08:17:44
So it hasn't been designed, we have no planning permission, and we don't have the funds required to build it.

Sounds like things are right on track.

Joe O'Brien
5 Posted 14/09/2018 at 08:26:57
And you can't beat a bit of negativity also Stewart.. see Phil @ 4
Joe O'Brien
6 Posted 14/09/2018 at 08:26:59
And you can't beat a bit of negativity also, Stewart... see Phil @ 4
Alan McGuffog
7 Posted 14/09/2018 at 08:39:43
Phil, those are mere details. What we need is to close our eyes, click our heels, make a wish and we'll be back in Kansas. Or Gillmoss.
Niall McIlhone
8 Posted 14/09/2018 at 08:44:38
We are seven posts in already and nobody has come up with a Cheech & Chong reference! Are you all dozing today?
Andrew Yates
9 Posted 14/09/2018 at 08:44:46
It took me nearly 6 months to get a small temporary building put up at my place of work, chasing up 3rd parties every week, planning etc and that was still only with a gentlemen's agreement from the council.

I'm not worried, it will happen and worst case we have the potential to experience some glory whilst still playing at Goodison Park — what better way to say goodbye to the most magnificent stadium ever built, with League, FA Cup, League Cup and Champions League trophies in the cabinets!!!

Nicholas Ryan
10 Posted 14/09/2018 at 08:57:23
For a project of this size and sensitivity, the Secretary of State will inevitably appoint an inspector, and hold a public inquiry. The experience of Kirkby tells us that the Club have to be 100% ready for such an eventuality. It takes as long as it takes!
Colin Glassar
11 Posted 14/09/2018 at 09:13:01
Once Kenwright opened his gob the other day, I knew it would all go Chong.

I'm off!

Laurie Hartley
12 Posted 14/09/2018 at 10:13:24
From the very positive interview with Colin Chong on the official site:

Understandably, a lot has also been said about funding. Like all developments of this size and nature, the funding is complex. We have a number of options available to us. Liverpool City Council is one of those options and there are other opportunities we are exploring too. Any deal we do will be the best deal for Everton Football Club.

Well worth a read.

Tony Everan
13 Posted 14/09/2018 at 10:15:30
What were the sticking points for the council's £280M loan? Are the government's Public Works Loan Fund or Council asking for too much interest or adding clauses we won't agree to?

It seemed like a win-win for the club and the council but maybe they are squeezing us too much. The fact we are looking elsewhere maybe designed to sharpen their minds and relent on their demands.

Tony Everan
14 Posted 14/09/2018 at 10:21:16

Chong cheeches the council a lesson, says the deal has gone “up in smoke”...


James Ebden
15 Posted 14/09/2018 at 10:34:10
Anyone else a bit worried we are only now doing feasibility studies on capacity? Surely this should have been done before Meis started in earnest on the designs? That means planning permission will be some way off.
Tony Cunningham
16 Posted 14/09/2018 at 12:11:07
Bobby, a man worth over £2 billion does not just have £2 billion lying around doing nothing. His money is invested in other things which will bring in income and he'd have to sell those projects if he wanted to free up cash. Freeing up over ¼ of his money to fund a project that will take 25+ years to recoup probably doesn't sound like the best use of ¼ of his money.
Hugh Jenkins
17 Posted 14/09/2018 at 12:41:50
In all of this to-ing and fro-ing, many seem to be overlooking one significant difference between this and other previously proposed new stadium projects – the land has been acquired. That was Phase One and it is over.

We are now at Phase Two and it will be a while, for the reasons quoted, before we reach "shovel ready" stage.

But it is no longer a mythical nor mystical dream. It is a reality, at Phase Two in its development and execution.

Dennis Stevens
18 Posted 14/09/2018 at 12:56:48
Aye, Hugh, but a heck of a lot of that land is water.

Seriously though, acquiring the site doesn't necessarily mean that a stadium will be built on it. Mind you, that could be me hoping somebody will realise how much cheaper redeveloping Goodison Park would be!

Kevin Prytherch
19 Posted 14/09/2018 at 13:28:04
Bill's hit list:

1. Fortress Sports Fund
2. Arteta Money
3. Tescos at Kikby
4. Sylvester Stallone

Right – I'm out of ideas.

Filipe Torres
20 Posted 14/09/2018 at 14:34:21
I ain't an expert in finance but I believe the answer to Bobby @1 is: for profit.
Moshiri will sell Everton with added value (new stadium). But, in 20 or 30 years, Everton and the next owner will still be paying off the debt for the stadium funding.
Peter Cummings
21 Posted 14/09/2018 at 17:14:09
Once the site was secured, over a year ago now, we all thought that spades would be in the ground asap, but of course this is Everton and so far – despite a torrent of talks and 'discussions' – we appear to be no further forward in the building process... not even a plan on paper, by all accounts.

Now we appear to be going cap in hand to possible investors to fund what is fast becoming a white elephant with cost overruns probably running into the millions eventually, making the feasability of a new stadium null and void. Just saying.

Niall McIlhone
22 Posted 14/09/2018 at 17:17:56
Tony (#14) Many a laugh raised on that classic album by Cheech & Chong.

Returning to the stadium issue, I am with Hugh (#17) on this one: the site is in the bag, the City Council appear to want it to happen, and the fans are clearly enthralled by the prospect of being down by the river.

This particular part of Liverpool, although encompassing a World Heritage site, had been in many decades of neglect, and with complimentary infrastructural improvements, this will be a great asset to the club, the city, and the region.

Kieran Kinsella
23 Posted 14/09/2018 at 17:18:43
Peter 21,

The mystery to me is why the financing wasn't in place beforehand. It's like if I wanted to build a mansion, and I bought a patch of land for it to be built, and bought office space next door so I could look at it, then, having done both, I said "I wonder if a bank will lend me money to build the actual house?"

Pete Edwards
24 Posted 14/09/2018 at 17:24:33
Anyway, I hope all the dog-walking kite-flying red neighbours are happy that the Council won't be receiving £7m per year towards the city.
David Israel
25 Posted 14/09/2018 at 17:42:35
The Council is only proposing to part-fund the project, but it is demanding priority on all Everton assets in case of default. This obviously puts off other potential investors. That is surely the reason why Everton are looking at other financing possibilities, not just because of the shortfall. And I'd rather we borrowed privately than from a local authority with all the politics and ill-feeling that it will surely arouse. And football and Everton aside, I'm sure there are areas more in tune with its remit where the Council could invest.
Bill Watson
26 Posted 14/09/2018 at 19:00:55
Dennis. #18
I wouldn't worry too much about the water. Over a century ago the (so called) three graces were built on a dock that needed filling in and they seemed to manage Ok.
Jeff Armstrong
27 Posted 14/09/2018 at 19:16:07
Bill, funny you say “so-called” Three Graces, I'd never heard of them as that until about 15 years ago. I'm born and bred in Everton and never heard them referred to as that. Missus from Noggsy/Anfield says the same... I reckon 80% of Liverpool natives would say the same... marketing!
Laurie Hartley
28 Posted 14/09/2018 at 22:13:36
Getting away from the finance issue and on to the actual structure. Why fill a perfectly good excavation in?

I would drain the dock off, tank it, sink the stadium into it, and create an underground car park with what was left over.

Back to the funding – Usmanov once said his Arsenal shares were a "long-term investment for his family". He now has 5 or 6 hundred million pounds available which was earmarked for his family. Surely he must at least have looked at funding the stadium as a long-term investment option?

Ray Roche
29 Posted 14/09/2018 at 22:56:29
Bill, Jeff,

You're not alone in thinking that the “Three Graces” are a fairly recent marketing ploy. When I first heard it mentioned in regard to the Pier Head, I didn't have a clue what they were on about. Bullshit.

Brian Williams
30 Posted 14/09/2018 at 23:21:55
The Three Graces have been known as such for at least 20 years and, if my memory serves me correctly, a lot longer than that.
Ray Roche
31 Posted 15/09/2018 at 09:44:41
Maybe Brian, but that's a short time in the life of these buildings. I only recall hearing them referred to as that in the fairly recent past and to me, 20 years is the recent past!

They were given that moniker after the Canova statue of the real Three Graces from Greek mythology, and here my memory fails me, which enjoyed a blast of publicity for some reason, maybe it was loaned to the Walker Art Gallery, whatever, but soon after the Royal Liver Building, Cunard Building, and the Port of Liverpool Building became the Three Graces. That's how I recall things.

Steve Smith
32 Posted 15/09/2018 at 13:46:19
Capacity is an important issue and will need to be finalised before a full application can go in, but I think it's safe to assume that a plan based on 50k is well on the way, with adjustments to be made for the final capacity decision.

The planning application needs to be right first time; refusals and referrals will add years and millions on to the project, massively important to get this right.

Most projects of this size will be funded through borrowing; it's a rare event for one person regardless of billionaire status to completely fund this type of development.

Funding is a guesstimate until the application is approved, so although the feelers are out, it probably will be the last piece of the jigsaw.

Derek Thomas
33 Posted 15/09/2018 at 14:04:20
I read somewhere... (BBC?) that MacDonalds may fund the total cost of a new Napoli Stadium.
Joe McMahon
34 Posted 16/09/2018 at 10:53:58
Bill better to to Home Bargains for some blue paint and some sellotape, as the Bullens is due for a make over.
Steve Taylor
35 Posted 16/09/2018 at 21:16:43
What is needed is publicity, I suggest an advert.

Wanted: lobotomised financial backers who will let us keep all the TV cash and build a Stadium for a share of what's left.

Signed: Moshri & Kenwright.

Len Hawkins
36 Posted 20/09/2018 at 19:36:34
Grace Kelly, Grace Jones and Grace Darling.

I would imagine the ground will have to have all the road links in place so that all the traffic required can access the site. I don't think everything needed to build the Big Mac Double Stadium will go in and out through the Dock Gate which was built for a horse and cart. Over to the Council to get cracking.

Anyway if it was up before that tart, her granny and the dog, it would appear the dog would probably cock it's leg over the stadium if it is operated by red necks.

Mike Doyle
37 Posted 20/09/2018 at 20:28:26
When I was growing up in Liverpool (Old Swan until 1984) I'm fairly certain I never heard the phrase “The Three Graces”. I wonder if the fact that the Pier Head area was so grim back then (no trendy Albert Dock to visit) that few people went there explains it. You certainly didn't find tourists there as I recall.

Like much of the city centre, it's a very different place today.

Alan McGuffog
38 Posted 20/09/2018 at 21:22:45
Grace Slick.
Alan Bodell
39 Posted 20/09/2018 at 21:31:46
Alan, 2 songs 'Let It Go' and 'Do It The Hard Way'.

And, oh boy oh boy, we are doing things the hard way.

Phil Bellis
40 Posted 20/09/2018 at 22:20:13

Only times I went to the Pier Head was to have a night on the Royal Iris, go to New Brighton, or I fell asleep on the bus home.

Phil Bellis
41 Posted 20/09/2018 at 22:33:39
Amazing! Len... Too much Erdinger.. Apologies
Lukas Polster
42 Posted 23/09/2018 at 19:05:57
What about asking Saudi Arabia? They spending billions building mosques in the UK. We have the church at Goodison so we could have a few domes & a minaret... job done, the Caliphate Stadium.

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