American businessman pulls out of bid to buy Rangers

American businessman Bill Miller has pulled out of his bid to buy Rangers citing fan hostility and overly optimistic financial information, but administrators Duff and Phelps insist there are three more bidders interested in buying the stricken club

American businessman pulls out of bid to buy Rangers
American businessman Bill Miller is finally walking away from Ibrox Park

American businessman Bill Miller has withdrawn his bid for crisis-hit Scottish club Rangers FC. The 65-year-old Tennessee based trucking tycoon had been named preferred bidder for the Ibrox club by administrators Duff and Phelps last Thursday. However, after conducting initial due diligence over the weekend, Miller has opted not to pursue his interest citing fan hostility and over optimistic data as his reasons for pulling out.

In a statement, Mr Miller said: "As soon as I was announced as preferred bidder for Rangers, my team began to press ahead with our due diligence. In addition, I had preliminary discussions with the Scottish Footballing Authorities and limited discussions with Ally McCoist.

"We continued to work through the holiday weekend in order to meet a very compressed schedule. By late Monday night, it became clear to me that preliminary information, discussions and analysis were, unfortunately, more optimistic than reality."

He added: "Having no intention of negatively affecting the potential outcome of the club's future and after hearing the message from Rangers supporters and fans loud and clear (‘Yank go home!’), I notified the administrators today that I have withdrawn my bid for Rangers and will not be moving forward.

"I am deeply disappointed as I had considered the opportunity to bid for one of the most historic football clubs in the world, an honor and a privilege. I wish Rangers fans, supporters and employees my very best. I hope all your dreams and wishes come true. You certainly deserve it.”

Meanwhile, administrators Duff and Phelps insist there are three more offers on the table to buy the stricken club, one from the UK and two from overseas. Joint administrator David Whitehouse, said: "We can confirm that Bill Miller has decided not to complete his purchase of Rangers Football Club. Since Mr Miller was announced as preferred bidder on Thursday of last week, it is regrettable that more progress could not be made to further the sale of the club.

"We have been informed by his advisors that there were a number of issues with which he felt uncomfortable including legacy contracts, the limitation of potential revenues and the expectation of required investment. As in any company takeover, the selection of a preferred bidder does not guarantee the completion of the sale. In this case, with time and money for Rangers running out quickly, it was essential to move the process forward with urgency. Mr Miller’s bid was deliverable to creditors and was the only deliverable bid on the table at that time. We had no other unconditional bid.

"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. There is every opportunity for these bidders to now complete the purchase of the club prior to the end of the season."