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Gillingham continue talks with potential investors amid speculation of interest from the States

Gillingham say they remain in talks with ‘a number of potential investors’ as rumours of an imminent takeover persist.

The club have been seeking new backers for many years, in a bid to lift them from the lower reaches of the Football League, and supporters have been excited by speculation of a potential investor from America.

Paul Fisher (left) was brought in as co-chairman at Gillingham earlier this year. Picture: KPI
Paul Fisher (left) was brought in as co-chairman at Gillingham earlier this year. Picture: KPI

It’s not the first time the club have been linked to an American buyer, with owner Paul Scally reportedly meeting a potential investor from the States back in 2020.

Since then Mr Scally - who has often said he will listen to offers to sell up - has taken a step back from his role at the club, leaving co-chairman Paul Fisher to front the day-to-day running of the Gills.

In recent weeks the rumours of a wealthy US-based property tycoon showing interest in the club have gathered pace.

The Gills were asked to comment on those rumours and a statement said: “As we have for some time, the club continues to have conversations with a number of potentially interested investors.

“There is nothing further to add at this time.”

Gillingham remain the only Football League club in Kent but are badly in need of investment to make them competitive again. They are currently in the bottom reaches of League 2 and their lower-end budget has meant they have struggled to make an impact.

The club sit 20th in the division with just two wins and six goals scored from their opening 16 games.

The last financial statement of GFC Holdings - the holding company of the club - showed a pre-tax profit of £204,596 but they were reliant on a loan from the EFL to the tune of £882,800 - payable in instalments from August 2021 to April 2024 - on top of £1.28m in government grants following the Covid pandemic. Priestfield Stadium carried a value of £4m.

There was an outstanding loan of £1.8m owed to Three Directors Limited, of whom Mr Scally was one of the three directors who own joint control. The other two are former vice-chairman Michael Anderson and the club’s non-executive director Michael Quarrington.

Manager Neil Harris was asked about the rumours of a possible takeover last week and said: “Obviously I can’t say too much, I am a little in the dark myself, nothing changes for me, I focus on what is going on on the pitch, focus on preparing the team and making sure I get what I can control right.

“What happens off the pitch is down to the board. I have seen the rumours myself and it doesn’t make any difference to me.”

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