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Fitton's takeover is dead
1:03pm Thursday 6th December 2007 in News
ANDREW Fitton's proposed takeover of Swindon Town is dead in the water after the Ramsbury-based businessman confirmed his consortium had withdrawn its bid.
The news was first exclusively revealed on www.thisisstfc.co.uk this morning, Fitton claiming "it has become clear that it is unlikely that this matter will reach a satisfactory and rapid conclusion.''
It throws huge question marks over Town's immediate future with mountains of unpaid debts threatening to send the club out of business.
Club officials hurried into an emergency meeting at the County Ground this morning to discuss the implications of Fitton's withdrawal.
A meeting with the squad of players was also being convened for 1pm.
A press statement on behalf of Swindon Football Holdings Ltd - the company set up by Fitton's consortium for the purpose of completing the deal - said: "On 16 October 2007, a consortium of investors led by Andrew Fitton signed a Heads of Agreement with the major shareholders of Swindon Town Football Company Ltd (the club) under which details terms were agreed for the acquisition of a 75 per cent interest in the club in return for a substantial cash investment.
"The cash investment would have enabled the club to eradicate its debts, in particular those to HM Revenue & Customs and the remaining debts due under the Corporate Voluntary Arrangement, and would also have provided resources to develop the club.
"On 16 November 2007, following due dilligence, Swindon Football Holdings Limited, the company formed by the consortium for the purpose of making the investment, issued a draft contract to the vendors.
"Since that time there has been no substantial progress on the transaction and a number of deadlines have been passed and, based on a conversation with vendors' advisors this morning, it has become clear that it is unlikely that this matter will reach a satisfactory and rapid conclusion.
"Accordingly Swindon Football Holdings Limited has today informed the vendors that it has no other option than to withdraw from the transaction.
"Swindon Football Holdings Limited regrets that, given the amount of time, effort and money that has already been expended, the transaction has failed to complete and gives the club, its staff, players and fans its best wishes for the future.''