This might be something I regret committing to paper.  But then if people can passionately argue in favour of us signing Alfredo Morelos on this site, why shouldn’t someone bang the drum for 777 Partners?

Or at least offer a slightly different perspective on them, anyway.

Last October, I did a piece on how Genoa have been faring under 777 Partners for the last couple of years.  With our Everton now close(r) to a takeover by 777, I thought I’d do a quick recap and refresh in case there is anything else worth knowing (or worrying about) based on Genoa’s experience.  And then a few random thoughts on top.

My view

This is my completely uninformed view.  I do worry about 777 Partners owning Everton, but I probably worry more that the takeover doesn’t go ahead.  It might end badly with them; but without them, it might end badly and much sooner.

The negative in context

Whilst these guys are not great by any stretch, there is a bit of selective criticism of them and scaremongering too.  What I cannot figure out is whether some of the issues simply stem from them buying distressed clubs.  These clubs were basket cases before 777 Partners got involved and so they will all inevitably have their ups and downs inherited as a legacy of a worse time.

Let’s face it, Everton have been in an absolutely dire mess for about 3 years now – as a legacy of mismanagement going back to the start of Moshiri’s reign at the very least, and possibly even pre-dating the start of the Premier League if you’re going to take a wide lens on this stuff.  If 777 Partners do take over, the real harm has already been done.  They are just left picking up the pieces.

Article continues below video content


Why people don’t like 777 Partners

There are issues with drugs, tax bills, unpaid player wages, private equity, rampant capitalism etc etc.  Believe me, I am against at least one or two of these things as much as the next man.

But I also believe that much of the derision for 777 Partners stems from the fact that we all know they won’t go on a spending spree.  So if we accept 777 Partners, we accept that we aren’t going to be the next Man City.  Disappointing, I get that.  But that’s not their fault.

It’s similar to the way Dyche gets hated for fielding crap, boring sides when that’s not really his fault either.  Whilst people long to see something much better, the reality is that the alternative could be much, much worse. That’s as true for 777 Partners as it is for Dyche.

For what it’s worth, I don’t believe there is any possibility whatsoever of us being bought by anyone willing to embark on a spending spree.  That ship has sailed.  There will be no short-term turnaround.

Which is why a medium-term turnaround interests me.  And that’s why I think it’s interesting to look at Genoa and how they are being run.

Genoa's League position

In their first year back in Serie A after promotion, they are currently 12th, overperforming marginally on a squad valued at the 13th best in the division.  13 points ahead of the drop, they are in no danger of going down.

Not spectacular by any stretch, but objectively very solid for a yo-yo club in recent years.  They seem to have stabilised under 777 Partners.

Squad and Investment

After promotion, 777 Partners have overseen positive investment in the Genoa playing squad to get them into this stable position.  The spending has hardly been outlandish, but instead, they have focussed on getting the right players in from sensible markets:

  • Champions League benches for low-cost deals
  • Older talents for free or on loan
  • Top youth products from the likes of Juventus (loan or modest fees)
  • Younger talents from lower-cost markets in South America etc

This is exactly what I think we should have been doing for years now.  Indeed, it’s what we used to do under Moyes and Martinez to build up competitive and (for spells) decently attractive sides.

Consequently, 1 year after promotion, Genoa’s squad is not too bad, with some decent exciting footballers in there, like Malinovsky and Retegui, both of whom we’ve been vaguely linked with in recent years.

Despite getting in a big fee for Radu Dragusin (the Romanian defender who joined Spurs in January), they’ve still spent more than they have brought in through player sales.  

That should be music to the ears of Everton fans, who have seen £70m negative investment over the past three seasons.  For context, that is the difference between our right flank of Harrison and Young and having a right flank of Kudus and Livramento (or something along those lines).

It could also be the difference between keeping and selling Jarrad Branthwaite this summer – and being able to reinvest the proceeds we get from the probable sale of Amadou Onana.

This is not what the people want.  The people want Connor Gallagher, Scott McTominay, Pedro Neto, Ivan Toney and Kaoru Mitoma. Unfortunately, it’s not going to happen.  But, with patience, you could get something along the lines of the exceptional Leverkusen side that’s been built on the same principles (and Napoli too last season).

The Academy

Investment at Genoa doesn’t stop with the first team either, it extends into the academy.  For those enviously eyeing the likes of James McConnell and Bobby Clark and others for Liverpool against Chelsea – please note that these guys were recruited (like Sterling, Ibe, Solanke, Brewster, Elliot, Carvalho etc etc) and not brought through the system.  They do have a good system as evidenced by Quansah, Bradley and Danns – but they invest heavily in it too.

It is designed to provide players for the first team.  It is also designed to generate revenues through player sales – which create an accounting win for financial rules, and a bigger transfer kitty.

Genoa have been doing something along those lines under 777 Partners.  It is possible, though entirely speculative, that they may have helped us bring in Kingsford Boakye recently, who was last with AC Milan.  They will certainly look to enhance the academy if they do takeover.

Commercials

The on-the-pitch situation at Everton is a direct consequence of us being a tired, traditional (in a bad way) club off the pitch.  We have utterly failed to capitalise on the riches of the Premier League. The whole look and feel of the club is anchored in the 1980s and must be a huge turn-off to young fans.  It’s a turn-off for me and I’m nearly 45 (but very trendy).

At Genoa, 777 Partners have worked hard to turn around the perception of a similarly traditional (not in a good way) Italian club.  There’s a few interesting articles kicking around about invigorating their social media presence in a big way, attracting younger fans.  Also using Genoese music artists (and UK’s Rita Ora) to improve the perception of the club with younger people.

They are also working hard to generate revenue from the stadium through non-footballing events.

All-in-all, despite the issues with Class-A snortables and other indiscretions, there’s a lot of professional (albeit boring) stuff going on at Genoa.  So I’m going to keep the faith that these are at least safer hands than those of Moshiri – who has been an absolute disaster (except for the stadium) and will lead us to administration and / or relegation if left in charge much longer.

Reader Comments (78)

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Dupont Koo
1 Posted 28/02/2024 at 00:26:22
Robert, thanks for your thoughts. Your article simply reinforces how low our club has sunk that a group who "talk the talk but don't walk the walk" so far in their existence is the white knight on the horizon.

So depressing whenever I look up to our NSNO motto.

Danny O’Neill
2 Posted 29/02/2024 at 06:39:18
Very interesting and detailed article, Robert. I wouldn't expect anything else from you as opposed to my emotional ramblings!

I, like many, am suspicious about 777 Partners, but I also understand that something needs to happen.

This may be a wild card, but with MSP having put an amount of money in, I wonder if we could end up with a consortium? I don't know or confess to know.

Let's see what the suits in the self-appreciation society that is the Premier League decide. Their day will come when they get reigned in.

I also wonder, if 777 Partners do get the nod, that we end up with the opportunity for player exchanges? A bit like what the Red Bull clubs do/did?

On their academy, Klopp built a system. All teams coached and played the same way. That means when they get called up to the first team, they slot in seamlessly as they know the game plan and system.

For 777 Partners, this is a massive opportunity. Despite your correct comments about us being stuck in the 80s off the pitch, an English Premier League giant with a huge fan base.

I don't agree with your comment on young supporters. You only have to be at the away grounds around the country to witness it. How they do it, I don't know. But they do. I do however feel we need to do something to expand the fanbase.

I enjoyed that read. Thank you, Robert.

Paul Hewitt
3 Posted 29/02/2024 at 06:53:47
At last, a sensible and balanced piece on 777 Partners. Not all the scaremongering we get.

Maybe, just maybe, these guys will come in and stablize the club for the next few years, and see us into the new stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock in a healthier state. Then maybe they sell for a small profit, and everyone wins.

Tony Abrahams
4 Posted 29/02/2024 at 07:45:37
I think this is a good read because it's coming from somebody who is very concerned about the future of Everton.

You know I will obviously disagree with a lot of it, Robert, especially when you use the comparison of it not being Dyche's fault either, because if they do come in and don't spend any money, it would definitely be Dyche's fault then!

Seriously though it's incredible how far behind Everton's academy has fallen since they got rid of Martin Waldron, but I suppose Branthwaite and Calvert-Lewin were brought into the club in a similar way to those young Liverpool players you have just mentioned, although I shouldn't be going off-track, because you're writing about a much more serious and immediate issue.

Why do people create portfolios? Do they create them to just hang on William Kenwright style, by selling everything including training grounds, in the hope that the product around them grows, or are there actually other reasons?

Sam Hoare
5 Posted 29/02/2024 at 07:54:29
Robert! When 777 Partners take us down the drain, this article will be used to eviscerate you!!

But in all seriousness, you make some good points. I think it's easy to forget that 777 Partners have targeted clubs that are struggling (like ours) and so perhaps it's natural that they should encounter tough financial situations and impatient fans ready to complain.

It seems clear that 777 Partners don't have buckets of money and are unlikely to be pouring money into Everton. But that doesn't mean they can't improve us. Even if they are able to restructure our debt in a sensible way and implement a better transfer policy (which I think Thelwell is already doing), that would be a marked step up on what Moshiri has done.

I cannot pretend to understand the deeply detailed and apparently damning research that Paul the Esk has done. Clearly there are very valid reasons for concern. But I think one of your lines well summarises my feelings:

“Whilst people long to see something much better, the reality is that the alternative could be much, much worse.”

Danny O’Neill
6 Posted 29/02/2024 at 08:01:30
Not my favourite rag, but on your point Tony, interesting link.

Ex-Everton Academy recruitment chief, Martin Waldron, on players he signed – and those he wanted to — Liverpool Echo, 1 June 2020

Michael Kenrick
7 Posted 29/02/2024 at 08:25:11
I agree with Paul H — it's certainly refreshing to see something balanced and analytical assessment that veers away from the sensationalist scaremongering.

As for 777 Partners, a lot of folks on here have asked Why? From what I can tell, even through the tumultuous years, most clubs have seen pretty substantial returns on long-term investment in their ownership. It pays to buy in, hold, and then sell on at the right time. Just ask Robert Earl, Jon Woods, Bill Kenwright (Oh... err, no. Can't ask him!)

Now admittedly that model has been smashed to smithereens by Farhad Moshiri, who seems to have been forced(?) to take one hell of a massive haircut, if this takeover goes through. He can't be doing this out of choice and the only thing that makes any sense is that the monetary spigot which fed the mad player splurge and the early stadium funding has suddenly been turned off – around February 2022.

But what's in it for 777 Partners? Well, if they steady the ship, see the new stadium construction through to completion, and start to see Everton's overall finances operating in a far more sensible fashion, then there is clearly a medium-term upside. Incredibly, they don't seem fazed by the threat of relegation, which would normally freak out Americans, and which we are convinced would destroy us as a club.

The other common theme on here is "asset stripping". As far as flipping high-value players is concerned… well, been there, done that, story of our lives all along. So that is just business as usual for plucky little Everton, always destined to sell their better players.

Of more concern would be flipping the new stadium. But there may be a short-term fiscal case for this that would help the club finances in the short term. It's not my area of expertise but, if something akin to a mortgage could be secured that allowed Everton to retain ownership, control, and income from alternate commercial streams going forward, that might be a win.

I'm not usually overly optimistic but, in this case, the aggressive barrage of negative publicity against 777 Partners just never sat comfortably with me. But only time will tell…

Jarmo Rahnasto
8 Posted 29/02/2024 at 08:31:21
I also have same kind of thoughts Robert, allthought I don't have that kind of information like you have about Genoa. But I do think that at the moment this has to go through.

They have already supported us for almost £200 million so I don't think they want to lose all that money. If they stabilise the club a little bit and we survive a couple of years, with the new stadium, the club is going to be much more attractive for making a profit for them.

Of course there is a lot to worry about but maybe everything is not that negative as everybody is saying. Fingers crossed.

Iain Crawford
9 Posted 29/02/2024 at 08:33:23
A poll conducted by Grand Old Team yesterday attracted over 5000 respondents, 88% of Evertonians said they did not want 777 Partners to take us over.

There's been so many reports of late payments, credit rating a junk status, seized assets and pending court cases, biggest of all being their inability to produce audited accounts — it's no surprise Evertonians favourite soundbite is “Out of the frying pan and into the fire”.

How can meaningful due diligence for Everton and its fans be done without audited accounts? It's reckless and negligent in the extreme on an undertaking of a billion pounds plus.

What concerns me more than anything is, with this level of fanbase antipathy is more instability, more division and more protests are inevitable if things do not go well, or there is a perception of the club being fleeced financially.

All this at a time when unity is needed more than ever.

The bottom line as ever, as you have already said in so many words, Robert, is “What's the alternative?”.

At the moment sadly there isn't one …. so, until there is, what choice have we got? Lyndon's headline from last September is still valid … it's the devil or the deep blue sea.


Danny O’Neill
10 Posted 29/02/2024 at 09:16:14
I agree with a lot of that, Michael.

Whoever takes over, be that 777 Partners or someone else, it is going to be a medium-term to long-term plan.

Investing in a Premier League club with an iconic stadium that will be used for much more than Everton and football, can be viewed as a massive opportunity for them. Down-selected for Euro 2028. Bigger than anything they've done before.

Whatever happens, it won't be a short-term fix. If they or anyone else took over tomorrow, it won't address the challenges we face immediately, but it would provide an injection of confidence and get rid of the uncertainty for now.

I just want this to be resolved one way or the other.

John O'Brien
11 Posted 29/02/2024 at 10:01:20
Completely agree with the central theme of the artice by Robert.

We are all looking for the sovereign wealth fund but, as Newcastle have found out, it now doesn't matter how wealthy your owners are – you can't spend more than £35M on average more than your turnover.

Something that a previous CEO, Robert Elstone, said on more than one occasion – "We've got to buy better and sell better than everyone else." I may have paraphrased him but it was words to that effect. Elstone, like every other CEO, was derided by many on these pages, but I thought he always spoke a lot of sense before he moved on to Super League.

This was in the pre-Moshiri days before the Bacchanalian excess that then took hold of the club once Moshiri took over.

If these guys do come in and if they can operate a "Moneyball approach as the likes of Brighton and Brentford have been doing,then we can stabilise. and improve.

There is no alternative to 777 Partners as far as I can see, they clearly want it so I think if they are approved we need to run with it and give it all our support and see where it takes us.

Dave Abrahams
12 Posted 29/02/2024 at 10:18:51
777 Partners look dubious to me if they were just taking over Everton but they have four or five(?) other clubs to look after. Where do we come in their considerations?

Makes them more than dubious to me… Like Don King looking after(?) his boxers.

Nick Riddle
13 Posted 29/02/2024 at 10:22:22
I was briefly encouraged by Robert's optimism, but then I read an article published today in The Athletic questioning whether the takeover was at risk because the 777 group of companies had lost a major source of funding following the financial downgrading of 777 Re, one of the few parts of the 777 group that makes serious money.

The logical conclusion to that article was that we may never discover whether 777 will be “good” owners because, as The Esk has long argued, the takeover is doomed to fail.

Worryingly, The Athletic does not provide any reassurance that there are other buyers ready to seamlessly step in if the 777 bid fails. To quote from the article “The Athletic has not been able to find any evidence that any new bidder will emerge unless all of Everton's creditors are willing to agree significant discounts on the amounts they are owed.“

Robert Tressell
14 Posted 29/02/2024 at 10:32:01
Dave Abrahams, there is every chance you are right. 777 Partners are in this to make money, and that may be at the expense of Everton.

As Sam points out above, I will get slaughtered for this article if that happens (and rightly so)! Tony A, you're therefore wise to make clear you disagree with a lot of my comments. To be honest, I'm not sure I've completely persuaded myself but thought it's interesting to have some perspective.

And that perspective leads to the logical position is that if Everton are successful then 777 Partners stand a better chance of a return on their investment. If Everton goes pear-shaped, then what's in it for 777 Partners? Maybe the stadium? Not sure.

Brian Harrison
15 Posted 29/02/2024 at 10:33:02
Robert,

As always well thought out and a well researched post, and very interesting to read of what has happened to Genoa under the ownership of 777 Partners.

But in your very detailed post, I see no mention of Standard Liege or the other clubs owned by 777 Partners.

Also, no mention that their main provider of money for their investments in various football teams across the world, A-CAP have said because of the downgrading of 777 Re's financial position, their funding of 777 will reduce to zero in the next 45 to 60 days.

Brent Stephens
16 Posted 29/02/2024 at 10:35:40
Robert, good stuff. Well researched, as usual. A question for me is who is in charge strategically and operationally at Genoa? Who has been making the smart decisions?

Is this 777 (and who at 777?) making those day-to-day strategic and operational decisions (at Genoa and at its other clubs)? If that is the case, then it might be showing 777 day-to-day decision-making Genoa as a key factor in Genoa's (relative) success.

And if that's the case, then that expertise should be transferable to Everton (though with the risk of over-stretching the responsibilities of 777's strategic decision-makers).

Alternatively, is it 777 Partners, having made the decision on who to install at strategic level at Genoa, then leaving the strategic / operational decisions to the Genoa management (and ditto at their other clubs)?

If so, then that relies on 777's ability to appoint a good management team at each club. Do they have that astuteness?

Andy Crooks
17 Posted 29/02/2024 at 11:00:35
Fine article, Robert.

I would be interested in any comments the Esk might have on it.

Ian Horan
18 Posted 29/02/2024 at 11:01:54
As a means of offering a reality check on the praise of Klopp and the "all teams play the same way" ethos. This was exactly what Brands tried to introduce, but I believe Unsworth went squealing to the now past Chairman, complaining that he had won Premier League 2 so why change the approach!!!

That in a nutshell clearly defines how Liverpool took a more strategic approach to the greater needs of the club as opposed to self-preservation by coaches within our Academy.

Jerome Shields
19 Posted 29/02/2024 at 11:11:36
Moshiri and 777 Partners have agreed to extend the timeframe of the deal, according to Paul the Esk.
Brian Harrison
20 Posted 29/02/2024 at 11:18:25
Robert,

I don't know if you have read Oliver Kay this morning, his take on 777 Partners is "seriously, the alarm bells not so much ringing as falling off the wall".

He also said there has been that much focus on the points deduction and appeal but alarmingly Everton are in such bleak position and serious questions need to be asked about their potential saviours 777 Partners.

How nice to see a mainstream journalist taking an interest as most have hardly passed comment on our potential takeover by 777 Partners. I said the other day, if this was happening to any of the Top 6 clubs, the journalists would have been all over this like a rash.

Dave Abrahams
21 Posted 29/02/2024 at 11:21:11
Robert (14), Like Tony I appreciate your posts and the time you must devote to all the details that most of them provide, I also think that you have a genuine concern over the future of the club.

I also realise you are trying to put a more presentable face on 777 Partners which you confess you have doubts yourself –whether they are going to be good for Everton FC – but just trying to put a brighter picture of 777 Partners, a different perspective.

None of us knows how they will turn out but my point of view is that they don't get the chance to try.

Tony Abrahams
22 Posted 29/02/2024 at 11:22:48
It looks like Usmanov seems absolutely desperate for 777 Partners to purchase Everton but it's turning into a saga now that the soap-opera is over.

I think Robert makes his best point when he says I might be wise not agreeing with him, Dave.

Not because I might be right but because the biggest fact is that none of us really knows how any new owners are going to pan out.

The only thing that is certain is that we are all absolutely desperate to turn the page on the last 25 years and move forward into the new stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock with both a clean slate and a chance to become the Everton of yesteryear once again.

Paul Hewitt
23 Posted 29/02/2024 at 11:36:18
Okay, say 777 Partners don't takeover, and no mystery buyer is waiting to swoop in. What happens then?

Moshiri looks to have given up on the club (probably Usmanov more likely). Administration seems the most likely outcome.

Mike Owen
24 Posted 29/02/2024 at 11:41:31
It's great the way that ToffeeWeb, with well researched articles from the likes of Robert and Paul the Esk, can provide different perspectives on issues such as 777 Partners for us to ponder.

I certainly think that, if it wasn't for the points deduction, we would all have been discussing this a heck of a lot more.

Tony Abrahams
25 Posted 29/02/2024 at 11:50:55
I think administration would be a lot more viable if the new stadium wasn't so close to being finished, Paul, although it's not something I know that much about.

Do you think that having spent so much money already that Usmanov wouldn't find a way to try and reclaim as much as he possibly could, rather than just losing everything?

Anthony A Hughes
26 Posted 29/02/2024 at 11:55:07
Are Genoa the exception to the rule though?

From all the other issues being reported about them, at face value, you wouldn't touch them with a bargepole… but then, with the state our club is in at the moment, they're probably right up our street to join the madhouse.

Clive Rogers
27 Posted 29/02/2024 at 12:00:29
Our debt after the new stadium is finished has been estimated at as much as £1.4 billion. I doubt 777 Partners have the means to cope with that or anywhere near that amount.
Paul Hewitt
28 Posted 29/02/2024 at 12:02:33
As of today, Usmanov is worth £14.5 Billion. Maybe he feels letting Everton go into administration won't lose him anymore money, instead of still funding it?

Let's be honest – if you're worth that much, losing £500 million ain't a lot.

Robert Tressell
29 Posted 29/02/2024 at 12:13:08
To answer a few points...

This shouldn't be taken as a contrary position on the financials described by Paul the Esk and others.

All of this is worrying. But I also think it's clear that our current financial position is also extremely worrying. The present ownership will surely take us into administration if they can't offload. And the experience of Leeds, Glasgow Rangers etc is not one that I relish for Everton.

Are 777 Partners responsible for the innovation in commercials etc at Genoa? Yes, I believe they are from what is in the mainstream press about it all. That would also be normal for a private equity business. They set the strategy - and put in place the right people to deliver it.

This is also how Brighton do it, for example (although their ownership is different). It is the opposite of how Moshiri & Kenwright seemed to do it, with both dabbling in their vanity project and usurping the position of people like Brands (who quickly became part of the problem, not the solution).

In Dyche and Thelwell, I believe 777 Partners would have two very good people in place already for implementation of this strategy (because they're doing it already to the extent that they can). The academy and commercials would need an overhaul though.

What about Vasco da Gama, Liege etc etc? Well, what indeed? If anyone can spare a bit of time to comment on them, then by all means do so! But I think Genoa is of most direct interest because it's such a similar club in a major European league – so perhaps the best indicator of how they would handle us.

Christine Foster
30 Posted 29/02/2024 at 12:51:41
Robert, pretty balanced article to be fair. 777 Partners track record though isn't great but, as it's Moshiri (?) making the call, who knows the reason this particular deal looks so attractive to him?

I tend to agree with Michael that it's probable that his benefactor turned the spigot off at the time of his persona non-grata status with the UK government, but what's puzzling to me are a few things…

Ongoing funding for 777, from where as it's stated major source of funding is stepping down and no longer going to back them. And just what their end game is? Are they in it for the long term or a 3- to 5-year patch and flick?

Honestly, I cannot understand Moshiri; people say 777 Partners are the only suitors but that's not realistic either. Everton FC may be struggling but it's operating in a huge cash liquid environment, has world wide appeal, a state-of-the-art stadium, and an owner seemingly desperate to get out.

But I can't help feeling there is a slight of hand in this deck... the club will not be able to stand on its own financially without serious restructuring of debt, massive increases in commercial activity, and a serious backer that will consolidate debt in a less costly way.

All our eggs appear to be in one basket, and it's clear that the Premier League have their own reservations as to the viability of 777 Partners and just how or from where they are going to fund it.

If Usmanov is pulling Moshiri's strings to sell to 777 Partners, then you have to ask Why? People like Usmanov rarely walk away after investing so much, even through a third party like Moshiri.

I just feel like we are missing something here. We need a solution quickly, but still, after all that has gone on, I feel we are only seeing half a deck.

Brent Stephens
31 Posted 29/02/2024 at 12:53:31
Robert, appreciate the further information in your second para in #29.

A tad more reassuring – 777 Partners not getting hands on at a club (they don't have time, I suspect) but a track record of selecting the right hands-on people.

Robert Tressell
32 Posted 29/02/2024 at 13:36:41
To address the other loose end, I would have thought Usmanov's present priorities revolve around:

- avoid being murdered
- avoid being imprisoned
- avoid having assets seized by the Russian state and / or international authorities

Everton is probably not a very high priority, in reality.

Indeed, he may somehow have realised his investment already through the steel contracts or possibly in complex layers of ownership and investment in the regeneration of part of the city.

Steve Brown
33 Posted 29/02/2024 at 13:37:55
Thanks, Robert, for writing such a balanced piece.

If 777 Partners buy Everton, we will be the biggest club in their portfolio. We will be their priority as the Premier League is the golden ticket for football profitability. I think 777 Partners have focused their funds on loans to Everton at the detriment, for example, of Standard Liege and Vasco Da Gamma,

If we retain our Premier League status and complete the stadium, then we will be a more attractive proposition. Moshiri will need to accept a price that reflects the debts a new owner is taking on, but he has already such an arrangement with 777 Partners.

My guess is that potential investors are waiting until the end of the season to see how the land lies. Even if 777 Partners take over the club, I am not sure they will hold it for long before selling it.

One thing is for sure. Moshiri isn't going to invest another penny into our club, so someone needs to take us over – and quickly.

Brian Harrison
34 Posted 29/02/2024 at 13:40:36
I posted the other day that I found it really puzzling why David Dein, the ex-CEO of Arsenal, was saying that the Premier League should allow 777 Partners to take control at Everton.

Then I remebered that Dein sold Usmanov his shares when Usmanov wanted to take control at Arsenal. So maybe somewhere in the background, Usmanov is bankrolling 777 Partners? I think it will be interesting to see where 777 go to borrow the money when A-CAP stop funding them.

Just listened to Martin Lipton, the head sports writer for The Sun, saying that he still believes that, seeing Everton after their appeal hearing have still been docked points, he thinks that opens the door for Leicester and Leeds to claim compensation from Everton.

Just feels like being a boxer from the 30s who has already been through 30 rounds, can't see out of either eye, his whole body is battered and bruised and is trying to get up from another knockdown.

Stephen Colby
35 Posted 29/02/2024 at 13:43:18
It is extremely worrying that in 2021 AM Best assigned an A rating to 777 Re(insurance), the company umbrellaing 777 Partners.

In 2024, they downgraded this rating to C.

Barry Rathbone
36 Posted 29/02/2024 at 13:59:51
So, if we accept 777 Partners, we accept that we aren't going to be the next Man City.

There lies the fly in the ointment fans will not put up with anything less. The unwritten contract of mediocrity being acceptable vanished with the Moyes - Martinez transition. Umpteen managers since demonstrate the point.

Dave Lynch
37 Posted 29/02/2024 at 14:14:19
Barry... I don't want us to be next Man City, ill settle for a Villa or Spurs.

Attacking football and a bit of entertainment will do for starters.

Pat Kelly
38 Posted 29/02/2024 at 14:14:57
From the School of Science to a mere chattel.

The decline and fall of EFC.

Ian Pilkington
39 Posted 29/02/2024 at 14:21:07
Robert,

We want to initially get to the level of Villa and the Barcodes and then kick on to return to the elite where we stood as a club for most of our history before the disastrous coming of Kenwright in 1999.

This may still be possible when the 14 clubs outside of the Sky Six finally come to the conclusion that the P&S rules are not fit for purpose, with the Premier League seemingly operating purely to sustain the status quo of the latter.

You have clearly done your homework on CFC Genoa; I have visited the city twice and seen their ground which is shared with Sampdoria. The city, with its great maritime history, has much in common with Liverpool.

However, CFC Genoa has very little in common with us. Italy's oldest surviving major club, like us, it has won 9 league championships but none since 1924, just one Coppa Italia in 1937 and has spent just two seasons in Europe.

I can see nothing on offer from 777 Partners for us other than a future of more mediocrity and uncertainty and I am hoping that, for once, the Premier League will come to our aid and reject them as suitable owners.

I simply cannot believe that with the new stadium approaching completion, Usmanov and Moshiri cannot find another owner and neither are they likely to walk away and allow us to fall into administration.

Tony Abrahams
40 Posted 29/02/2024 at 14:32:47
If the people who I've said have been interested in Everton all along end up getting the club, then I think we might begin to see what that sleight of hand might have been, Christine, but right now I'm very concerned because it feels like 777 Partners are inexplicably in the driving seat.

We will find out soon enough…

Peter Mitchell
41 Posted 29/02/2024 at 14:33:20
Brian @34:

I posted on another thread that I don't think we can be sued for any sporting advantage for this season, as if found guilty in our second charge, the points deduction that follows should be proportionate to the advantage gained.

However, we can potentially be sued by teams who were relegated last season, as the points deduction for that (which were only given because we gained a sporting advantage) have only been applied this season.

That being said, I don't see how it could possibly apply to more than one team, as only one would have stayed up instead of us (Leicester), unless we could be sued by the second club (Leeds) for the "cost" of one place in the table in terms of prize money (£2.6M or thereabouts)? I think Southampton did not have enough points to catch us, even with 6 docked.

Kieran Kinsella
42 Posted 29/02/2024 at 15:13:02
Sorry but I fundamentally disagree Robert.

777 Partners' last resort unconventional lender, who reportedly lends them money at 52% interest, has announced that it will not lend them money for the next 60 days due to their dire credit rating.

Just think about that for a moment. When you loan people money at that interest rate, it's because you know there's a high likelihood they will default somewhere along the line. If you can't borrow from loan sharks even sketchier than the types Bill resorted to then you've got real problems.

Then we have the Standard Liege issue. 3 months in a row of salaries not being paid. If as seems likely the Premier League commissions adopt an EFL-style punitive system, then if we find ourselves in that position, we will lose 2 points for each occurrence.

Don't think it will happen? No matter how highly we rank among their priorities, if they have no access to credit then they can't pay. They've already defaulted on payments for aircraft and the airlines were well ahead of Everton FC in terms of their overall business model.

I was working in finance back in 2008. Heavily regulated entities like AIG, and numerous banks went to the wall because of stupid decisions. These jokers aren't even operating in that realm. They are operating in shadow markets as it is and not subject to the same level of scrutiny as high street banks.

There were very few clues that Bernie Madoff, Enron etc were charlatans. These guys literally all over the world (Utah, Bahamas, Canada, Australia) are facing investigations and lawsuits for delinquent debts, alleged criminal activity and worse. They are not so much red flags as a giant red planet with the word "SCAM" carved into it through a system of canyons ten times larger than the Grand Canyon.

I realize we are unaware of any specific viable alternatives. But we do have a current owner who is a billionaire. Yes, I doubt he wants to throw more good money after bad. But he may have to unless he is prepared to entirely write off his investment and allow us to go into administration.

Paul Hewitt
43 Posted 29/02/2024 at 15:21:43
Tony @40.

You keep saying that other buyers are interested. Well ,I'm certainly not calling you a liar, but where are they?

What's the point of waiting to see if 777 Partners succeed or not? If they really want to buy the club, why don't they come forward???

Robert Tressell
44 Posted 29/02/2024 at 15:40:17
Ian # 39,

"However CFC Genoa has very little in common with us. Italy's oldest surviving major club, like us it has won 9 league championships but none since 1924, just one Coppa Italia in 1937 and has spent just two seasons in Europe."

I'm afraid that has more in common with Everton than you might think. Basically, anything that pre-dates the Premier League is ancient history. We've had a cup win and about half a dozen European qualifications in the past 35 years. To anyone under 45, we're the Premier League's version of Genoa.

Kieran # 42, I'll repeat that I don't contest any of the financial stuff that Paul the Esk has said or that you are now saying. What I do contest is this:

"But we do have a current owner who is a billionaire. Yes, I doubt he wants to throw more good money after bad. But he may have to unless he is prepared to entirely write off his investment and allow us to go into administration."

I don't believe Moshiri is remotely concerned about Everton going into administration. As evidenced by everything he has done (or more particularly not done) in the past 3 years. And I don't believe there is anything in place which will require him (apart from morally, chuckle chuckle) to cough up if we do go down the tubes.

Clive Rogers
45 Posted 29/02/2024 at 15:43:39
People keep posting to say Usmanov is the one pulling the strings. Is there any evidence to support this?

He may have loaned Moshiri cash, which he wants back, but Moshiri seems to be the one panicking and taking actions to preserve his fortune.

Dale Self
46 Posted 29/02/2024 at 15:56:37
Taking a cheap shot here: it's as if 777 Partners view our club as being in a distressed condition as the geriatric victims of the predatory lending they practice. I'll take the unknown future behind door number two, Monty!
Jay Harris
47 Posted 29/02/2024 at 16:05:35
Robert, like you, I am not totally opposed to 777 Partners. Yes, they are not ideal nor desirable but they would bring some presence, expertise and strategic planning to the club.

Something we haven't had for 30 years.

There is no doubt they would be very committed to EFC and there is no doubt they are "smarter than the average".

Besides money, we have lacked direction and control since Kenwright took over. With 777 Partners, these issues would be resolved.

The only question mark is how will our financial situation be looked at and would we be just kicking the ball down the road?

Danny O’Neill
48 Posted 29/02/2024 at 16:09:17
Paul @43,

I don't think anyone knows who else may be waiting.

All we do know is that Everton are a huge club in the Premier League. They will continue to be so, with the new stadium on the horizon.

I don't know, but there will definitely be interested parties waiting in the wings.

Just as when the red cousins were one day away from administration.

Dale Self
49 Posted 29/02/2024 at 16:12:15
Whut?? Where are you getting the impression that they have long-term strategic planning acumen? Unless you mean the paying of Paul after robbing Peter is somehow long-term in its view.

They are trying to scale up so that asset values can be inflated to cover other holes in their balance sheets, come on.

Tony Abrahams
51 Posted 29/02/2024 at 16:25:16
Paul, if you have been reading what I've been saying,y ou will have read that I believe they have already been dismissed twice, and were absolutely flabbergasted when they got rejected a second time.

They walked away and not long after,they were allegedly approached again by Everton, asking them why they had decided to walk away?

Hard to believe, until you consider the shambolic mess that Everton have been for years. When Christine, who I believe is usually not far away, whenever she reads certain situations, talked about a sleight of hand, she made me nod.

I've always said, there will be a twist if the people who I've always been led to believe are trying to purchase Everton eventually do, Paul, so hopefully we don't have long to find out if it's true, because the suspense is definitely getting to me.

Sleight of hand and twist of fate
On a bed of nails they make us wait
And we wait without them!

Dennis Stevens
52 Posted 29/02/2024 at 16:30:55
Great stuff, Tony - lyrics from when we last won the League!
David Thomas
53 Posted 29/02/2024 at 16:54:43
Tony,

Who are the people who have been knocked back twice.

If they are genuine bidders, surely the news would have been leaked?

Tony Abrahams
54 Posted 29/02/2024 at 17:04:43
You would have thought so, David, but I've been told they definitely don't court publicity and this might have even been helped by that simplist of twists of fate.

I'm at the stage of being a riddler now, David, except I've stopped thinking about U2 and I've now moved on to Dylan. Although it amazed me to hear that song was so old, Dennis. I'd forgotten, mate.

Dennis Stevens
55 Posted 29/02/2024 at 17:32:04
Tangled Up In Blue, eh Tony
Andy Crooks
56 Posted 29/02/2024 at 17:37:02
Kieran @42, that is scary.

Robert had cheered me up a bit. Kind of like, what do you want first, the good news or the bad news? Wish I had asked for the bad news first.

Actually, it should be a choice between really bad news and Armageddon.

Dale Self
57 Posted 29/02/2024 at 17:40:12
I meant predatory annuity and life insurance buyouts in case that bothered anyone. It’s still early out here.
John Raftery
58 Posted 29/02/2024 at 17:43:42
Whoever takes over, it will be a Long and Winding Road but let’s hope it’s not An Uphill Climb to the Bottom.
Rob Jones
59 Posted 29/02/2024 at 18:34:02
Barry, the "umpteen" managers have nothing to do with the fans, and everything to do with Moshiri not having a fucking clue how to run a football club.

If Moshiri cared what the fans thought, even slightly, he wouldn't have hired Rafa Benitez.

Barry Rathbone
60 Posted 29/02/2024 at 19:30:11
Rob @59,

I couldn't disagree more.

The Benitez madness appeared to be Usmanov flexing his muscles judging by the reported slap down of Kenwright's objections. Doubtless Moshiri pandering to fans' demands for change and the ensuing disasters had Usmanov saying "enough is enough".

To suggest fans were not demanding change is a rewrite of history.

Jim Wilson
61 Posted 29/02/2024 at 19:50:35
I agree with you, Robert. We have to hope that 777 Partners are not as bad as the bad press say they are.

If there is no one else, 777 Partners are better than administration and fingers crossed they surprise us.

Rob Jones
62 Posted 29/02/2024 at 20:13:29
Barry, can we split the difference here?

Fans may well have demanded change, but honestly, I don't think that Farhad Moshiri (or the hand inside the puppet) have ever given a stuff about us.

Ed Prytherch
63 Posted 29/02/2024 at 20:23:06
For many of the older fans on here with various ailments "old age sucks but it beats the alternative".

The same may apply to Everton and 777 partners.

Barry Rathbone
64 Posted 29/02/2024 at 20:39:51
Rob @62,

Spot on!

Derek Thomas
65 Posted 29/02/2024 at 21:31:11
777 Partners is obviously the best deal for Moshiri and thus some people might automatically assume that it's bad for Everton.

Nobody knows... and it's not even a done deal yet.

Worry about the problem in front of you – beat West Ham.

Laurie Hartley
66 Posted 29/02/2024 at 21:32:34
Christine # 30, you have expressed how I feel about this whole business far better than I could have.

I too believe that there is something going on in the background that we are unaware of.

Ian Pilkington
67 Posted 29/02/2024 at 22:09:25
Robert @44

CFC Genoa haven’t been Italian champions since 1924! We have been English champions seven times since then and you may be surprised to learn that there are quite a few us still around who can remember four of those triumphs.

You refer to anything before the Premier League as ancient history. We may have struggled during the PL era but since 1993 Genoa has spent 11 seasons in Serie B and one in Serie C.

You really cannot pass off 777’s ownership of Genoa as any sort of mitigation in favour of them owning us.

I will continue to live in hope of Tony Abraham’s belief that another new owner will emerge shortly.

David Thomas
68 Posted 29/02/2024 at 22:30:49
Tony 54,

I’m sure whoever these prospective buyers are don’t regularly read this website so I’m fairly sure you would be safe to tell us who you’ve heard is interested in purchasing the club.

Eric Myles
69 Posted 02/03/2024 at 06:37:22
Iain #9,

"Biggest of all being their inability to produce audited accounts... How can meaningful due diligence for Everton and its fans be done without audited accounts?"

From what I read, 777 Partners are incorporated in a jurisdiction that does not require the submittal of audited accounts. So why would they do so for the Premier League?

If the Premier League don't like it, they could have rejected them on those grounds (if they were valid grounds to do so) on Day 1 when 777 Partners said "Fuck you!" So why the delayed delay?

ps: Enron had audited accounts!!!

Iain Crawford
70 Posted 02/03/2024 at 08:05:22
Eric, they'd certainly help rather than hinder the decision-making process. The delay must be the Premier League's questions with regards to greater detail of source of funds, liquidity issues, and ability to fund longer-term under stress of possible relegation considering our recent narrow escapes.

The Esk's recent analysis of the implications of the credit ratings downgrades from their main source of funding, 777 Re, are major issues the Premier League's regulators are probably looking at. These are now compounded by another major source of 777's funding, A-CAP reducing exposure to 777 to zero over the next few months to protect its own credit rating.

“The ratings AM Best:

The ratings report for 777 Re cites several areas of concern including:

* Very weak risk-adjusted capitalisation

* Materially significant exposure to affiliated assets (see above)

* Great deal of uncertainty over liquidity of affiliated investments (see above)

* No audited statements from 777 Partners LLC since 2020

* No audited financial statements for 2022 from Bricknell Insurance Holdings (777 Re's immediate holding company)

* Material turnover in its board of directors and executive team

* No appropriate structure for its risk profile

* Investment guidelines bypassed with board approval

* Company has plans to reduce exposure to affiliated assets but with significant operational risks.

All of which present an extremely challenging environment for 777 Partners LLC but particularly in the context of not just credit rating concerns, but also regulatory concerns.”

One way or another, Everton need a decision, this has gone on long enough. Hopefully the meeting between the Premier League and 777 Partners in 10 days time will bring things to a head and enable that.

Christine Foster
71 Posted 02/03/2024 at 08:33:52
One has to ask the question: would the Premier League be doing us a favour by saying No? Or if they really wanted to stuff us, say Yes... perverse, isn't it?

As days go on, to any reasonable observer, it doesn't sound good for 777 Partners, but what's really the best option for Everton and is it the best option for Moshiri? Increasingly they don't appear to be linked.

Tony Abrahams
72 Posted 02/03/2024 at 09:48:27
There are rumours circulating that the premier league are going to accept 777 Partners, and I've just listened to a WhatsApp message of Josh Wander, having a conversation with that old friend of Farhad's, Jim White, saying that he has been told to say nothing just yet by the Premier League, Christine.

It is perverse, it might also be Moshiri trying to fish others out to make him a better offer, and although he his no longer with us, it does feel that this is the final dying embers of the Bill Kenwright era. The era of speculation.

Eric Myles
74 Posted 03/03/2024 at 06:24:02
Iain #70,

If audited accounts are the main sticking point, the Premier League could have rejected 777 Partners weeks (months) ago and the club and fans would have a clearer view of where our future lies.

But by prevaricating, 777 Partners have slipped into a credit de-rating, maybe because of a £200 million unsecured loan to EFC, which might not have otherwise happened.

Their credit rating may have even benefitted since some reports say that they want to purchase us to increase their asset value and attract further investment.

Peter Hodgson
75 Posted 03/03/2024 at 17:30:17
I must admit that I have read most but not all posts on this thread, so apologies if I have missed anything of significance.

I thought your piece, Robert, was very good and really told it as it is regarding where we are actually up to with 777 Partners. We are, as Lyndon said, between the devil and the deep blue sea.

This particular devil however has put nearly £200M into the club — which makes me think that their integrity and foresight is a bit different and better than most other people who are commenting about them.

Your thoughts and ideas won't be universally agreed although I hope they find agreement here if only of the "I'll wait and see" variety. That is where I am currently at, as I don't subscribe to the 'there is someone waiting in the wings' idea. so I too hope they get the nod from the Powers That Be soon, so we can start our wait and see period.

After so long under the Kenwright stewardship (and Moshiri within the club of late), 777 Partners will need to do a forensic analysis of the setup prior to making substantial changes, which in itself, will cause a great deal of angst but probably will be necessary.

I think we can only hope and pray for better things.

Paul Smith
76 Posted 03/03/2024 at 22:30:10
Random, but I've just read that a lawyer called Vanessa Heap working on this deal with 777 Partners threw herself in-front of a train in September last year after working 18-hour days. She had just celebrated the deal going forward.

Things could be worse, hey. God bless her.

Stephen Davies
77 Posted 04/03/2024 at 18:13:32
Stephen Davies
78 Posted 05/03/2024 at 12:18:52
From The People's Forum:

Torygraph...

Posted on March 5, 2024, 12:05 pm

Everton future in peril if 777 takeover not completed this month

Working capital and new stadium financing for Bramley-Moore Dock is only assured until March 31

Tom Morgan, Sports News Correspondent 4 March 2024 • 5:39pm

777 Partners co-founder Josh Wander at Goodison Park for an Everton match in February

Everton's financial future will be plunged into major doubt by the end of the month if 777 Capital's proposed takeover remains unresolved.

Pressure is mounting for the Premier League to finally make a decision on the deal as working capital and new stadium financing is assured only to March 31.

The coming weeks could be among the most consequential in the Merseyside club's history, with executives also fighting a second alleged spending breach.

A decision on the outcome of the league's toughened owners' and directors' test can be ruled out for at least another week, sources tell Telegraph Sport. More meetings are anticipated between the top tier and the Miami-based investment firm in the coming days to clarify outstanding questions face to face.

Even if the Premier League board is then satisfied it has received all information, an independent oversight panel of KCs will be called in to review conclusions under the new rules.

The precedent set by Sir Jim Ratcliffe's 25 per cent purchase of Manchester United have led insiders to conclude that further process alone will take another seven days.

Although Everton's 10-point deduction was reduced to six last week, the club's form has dipped worryingly, with defeat against West Ham on the weekend.

An appeal panel reduced Everton's punishment due to “legal errors” but an accompanying ruling detailed how the club had already committed “over £800 million” to its new Bramley-Moore Dock development.

Telegraph Sport has reported previously how 777 appears unwilling to provide any further loan funding while the takeover saga drags on. The company, one of a growing number of multi-club owner models, agreed to purchase owner Farhad Moshiri's 94 per cent stake in September. It has since provided Everton with a further £30 million in funding, taking the total loan from the American investment firm to £180 million.

In recent weeks, 777 has moved to reassure its own staff over its finances after the recent departure of Damien Alfalla as chief financial officer.

Co-founders Josh Wander and Steve Pasko wrote in an internal memo: “We are pleased to announce that Brett Kaufman will be stepping into the role of CFO for 777 Partners. We are confident that this change will fortify our future growth and are excited to welcome Brett into the 777 family. We appreciate your continued support and enthusiasm during this transition.”

Everton were hit by claims that the takeover could be put in danger by allegations regarding one of 777s subsidiaries, 777 Re, which is a Bermuda-based reinsurer.

But sources close to 777 insisted the reinsurer has been placed under administrative control as part of a reorganisation of the industry by Bermudan authorities, rather than being placed into administration, and that there are no issues for their funding of the Everton deal as a result.

Derek Thomas
79 Posted 05/03/2024 at 13:37:21
We seem to be just another brick in their pyramid - which maybe collapsing anyway.

Their method seems to be, pump money in... gathered from who knows where...then claim the right to take over due the fact if they pulled out the takeoveree would fold if they didn't put more in via total ownership - allegedly...I think.

#faitaccompli

Stephen Davies
80 Posted 12/03/2024 at 11:42:37
From the Financial Times:

Everton FC bidder 777's funding structure starts to unravel

US insurer with extensive links to investment group looks to raise capital and regain control of assets ceded to reinsurer

The deal to acquire Everton Football Club has put 777 in the spotlight, drawing scrutiny from local politicians, journalists, rating agencies and regulators

Dan McCrum, Samuel Agini and Ian Smith 5 hours ago
16

A Bermudian financial structure used by the Miami-based bidder for Everton Football Club to funnel money invested for widows and orphans into the sport has begun to unravel.

777 Re, a Bermuda-based reinsurer, has enabled 777 Partners to pursue an ambitious dealmaking spree that has included trophy sporting assets and football clubs from Genoa and Hertha Berlin in Europe to Vasco da Gama in Brazil.

But the reinsurer's ability to further finance the Miami-based firm's deals is under pressure, while creditors to 777 Partners have turned to the courts.

US insurance group A-CAP, a lender to 777, late last month said it would attempt to raise $400mn in fresh capital and take back control of assets ceded to 777 Re because of credit rating downgrades. Separately, a lawsuit filed in New York last week sought to prevent the transfer of 777 Partners' assets to a co-founder to protect creditors' interests, calling the firm a “house of cards”. 777 declined to comment on the court case.

777, which initially made its money in niche areas of finance such as structured settlements, historically flew under the publicity radar.

The deal to acquire Everton, the nine-time champions of England, from British-Iranian Farhad Moshiri has put the group into the spotlight, drawing scrutiny from local politicians, journalists, rating agencies and regulators.

The Premier League has been assessing 777 since September last year, during which time Sir Jim Ratcliffe's purchase of a Manchester United stake was waved through.

777 has not disclosed how it will finance an Everton takeover, but people close to the deal have said 777 Re was not essential to funding the deal. A person close to 777 told the Financial Times in December that an entity called Nutmeg Acquisition would be used in the purchase. Following scrutiny of 777 Re's lending to Nutmeg, people close to 777 insisted that separate financing plans were in place.

777 Partners has lent at least £150M to Everton, according to several people with knowledge of the matter. A-CAP has also provided direct finance to a number of 777 entities.

The reinsurer was at the heart of 777's “insurance funding model”, according to 2021 pitch documents that said 777 Re sat between third party insurers and 777 portfolio companies. People close to 777 said the group and the reinsurer had an “aggressive” investment strategy. In the presentation, 777 said its approach could generate returns on equity of more than 40 per cent, compared with the 10 per cent in the “traditional approach”.

Annuities such as those offered by A-CAP are typically backed by low-risk investments in liquid securities, because policyholders are often able to redeem funds, subject to penalties. Insurers sometimes “cede” assets and liabilities to reinsurers in order to manage their balance sheets.

AM Best, a rating agency that specialises in insurance, has raised concerns about the quality of assets held by 777 Re, which are invested to support annuity contracts sold by A-Cap and another insurer, Silac. Last month it downgraded the credit ratings of 777 Re and A-CAP, and placed Silac on negative watch.

At the start of last year, half of 777 Re's $3B assets were classified as related party investments, while $2B worth were classed as “level 3” assets considered hard to sell or accurately value, according to the most recent accounts available.

A-CAP's plan to raise capital is a response to the downgrade from AM Best, which centred on concerns about 777 Re's holdings.

777 Partners co-founder Josh Wander told the Financial Times that he was “not that concerned” about 777 Re, which he said did not need more capital: “The business is overcapitalised.” He added that the entity was reducing its holdings of illiquid assets “even though . . . we have done absolutely nothing wrong”.

One industry expert who had examined 777 Re's 2022 accounts said of its illiquid assets “in trying to reposition the portfolio it's unlikely it'll be able to sell at those valuations”.

A-CAP controls life insurers based in Utah and South Carolina. A-CAP chief executive Kenneth King late last month told insurance agents that AM Best's downgrade was unwarranted. “I think that there was pressure for [AM Best] to take action, for anybody that had a relationship with 777 Re,” said King. He added: “We don't agree with their position.”

Michael Wise of the South Carolina insurance regulator said he was aware that his Bermudian counterparts were addressing issues at 777 Re, and that the state continued to “co-ordinate our efforts as necessary” with other US state regulators.

Silac, which has $10B in assets and is run by a longtime friend of Donald Trump, did not respond to requests for comment. The Bermuda Monetary Authority declined to comment. The Utah state regulator declined to comment on A-CAP. AM Best declined to comment.


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