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SSBWFC in court today: What we need to know

Another day in the winders court for Bolton? Actually, no it's not.

Bristol City v Bolton Wanderers - Sky Bet Championship Photo by Harry Trump/Getty Images

As Dean Holdsworths SSBWFC company name includes our clubs, it has inevitably been reported in the media that Bolton is under threat of being liquidated, ...again. But before any hares are set running, let's kill them off with a Morais precise shot.

This is not straightforward, so have a good gulp of that outrageously expensive morning coffee you've just bought and take a deep breath before carrying on.

The Bolton Wanderers portfolio of 5 separate companies, including the club itself and the Whites Hotel is essentially 'owned' by another company called Burnden Leisure. Whoever owns the majority of shares in Burnden Leisure, owns the club. According to Companies House, a government run website, both SSBWFC & Inner Circle (Ken Anderson's company) own 47.5% each with fans/public owning the other 5%.

During last years takeover, part of the deal involved SSBWFC loaning a sum of around £5m, at an eye watering interest rate, from an investment company called Blumarble. This loan was secured against various club assets across the whole portfolio of companies. Fast forward 14 months and the amount now owed, including interest, has been reported as around £7m, although this has not been confirmed by the club. Blumarble have recently raised a winding up petition against SSBWFC to be heard at the Royal Courts Of Justice in London at around midday. The detail as to why this has been raised is of course confidential, but in summary, Blumarble have no confidence that SSBWFC can repay the loan, hence the petition.

So, what's the worst scenario? Well, the registrar could approve the petition and a winding up order would be raised against SSBWFC. Blumarble will then have the authority to sell off SSBWFC assets in order to recover the debt. SSBWFC assets are the 47% shares in Burnden Leisure. If this sale of shares does not repay the full debt then Blumarble could try and recover the outstanding amount from the club companies that own the assets the debt was secured against. I must stress that a LOT can happen before this second course of action was taken by Blumarble.

What's likely to happen in court today? Most likely that the Registrar will adjourn the case to give SSBWFC more time to reach an agreement with Blumarble.

In summary, whilst not a great day for the clubs reputation, this case is NOT directed at Bolton Wanderers Football Club itself and whatever the decision, club business will no doubt carry on as normal. We will let you know the outcome.