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Club News

Club Statement: Update from Chairman Raj Singh

25 October 2023

Club News

Club Statement: Update from Chairman Raj Singh

25 October 2023

Hartlepool United Chairman Raj Singh has today given an update on the sale of the Club.

The Chairman commented on the ongoing matter:

“After the events of last season and given the sentiments shared by some supporters, I felt that I must put the Club up for sale. I’ve dedicated a huge amount of time, energy and money in the quest to try and help Hartlepool United and in many ways the Club is in a much more secure and well-run position, despite what some people like to portray.”

“It does however seem that no matter what I do, part of the fan base will not be happy and abuse towards my family and I from a minority has unfortunately continued.”

“Upon making the sale public in April I asked any interested parties to provide basic details including how they would take Hartlepool United forward as well as an initial proof of funds. The initial proof of funds was set at a level based purely on anticipated operating losses for this season and next. I wanted to be sure that if somebody came in they were reputable with enough working capital so that the Club didn’t find itself in a difficult position like it has done historically when owners have had firesales.”

“A number of enquiries did come in. Several were speculative and timewasting. The factual position is that, despite trying to find a buyer, nobody at this point has come forward with both intent and initial proof of funds to take over Hartlepool United.”

“Within that I’m aware that some people on social media are intent on making out that I’ve set a high price to put buyers off. I must be clear and reassure fans that nobody has even got past the first hurdle of providing initial proof of funds to be able to operate the Club for this season, which first and foremost is the most important thing.”

“One aspect that has been an evident issue during this process is the Club’s lack of ground ownership. That point was obviously something that I had been looking to address with the local authority longer term. It is unlikely that an international standard investor will step into a Club that doesn’t own its own ground with the potential to develop it for additional revenue streams.”

“In light of there being no immediate outright buyer, I have more recently asked to explore whether a small number of local investors might collaboratively come together to take shareholding in the Club. Again, to be clear this would be to positively invest into the running of the Club and to support with operating costs, not to pay me a sum. I would invite any interested parties in that manner to come forward.”

“Looking ahead, the Club will still formally remain up for sale and I will continue to proactively engage in the process. From my very first interview at Hartlepool United, I have always said that I stepped in to help the Club when it was in crisis but that I will not stand in the way of other another owner or investors who have the right intentions and backing. That has not changed.”

“In the interim I will continue to support the running of the Club in a professional manner and I have reiterated to John Askey, the staff and the team that they have my full backing. We have been exceptionally unlucky with injuries to key players at the start of this season but we must stay behind John and the lads to grind out enough results with focus on making the play-offs. With some new players hopefully still to come in and others to come back from injury I still have optimism for the season.”

“Finally, and once again I ask fans to remember that we are all human and that potential owners, investors and even players will look at us during this process.”

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