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Portsmouth Football Club

Client

Portsmouth Community Football Club Limited

Testimonial

"I met Mike Dyer, Head of Commercial Law at Verisona, during October 2012 and they were already heavily involved in the bid for ownership of Portsmouth Football Club. Both he and the Verisona team have been an absolute pleasure to work with ever since.

Verisona handled all legal aspects of the takeover and were available to both myself and the bid team 24/7. One of their greatest attributes is their flexibility in working to get the job done. I never once felt that calling during out of office hours was inappropriate, and we would often have conversations at 9, 10 and 11 o’clock at night, as well as weekends.

We have established an excellent working relationship with Verisona. The firm got very involved in all aspects of the takeover, looked after us and truly cared about our success.

I have worked with multiple Commercial Law firms during my 30 year business career and Verisona are by far the best that I have come across.

We have continued to use Verisona as our legal support post-administration and the firm gives us advice and support as we establish PCFC and get to grips with running the Club. Verisona are accessible, approachable, proactive and work very hard to earn their success."

History

After 16 months of commitment and hard work, legal firm Verisona celebrated its success in providing the business support, legal representation and financial management needed by ‘Portsmouth Community Football Club’ (“PCFC”) a consortium including ‘Pompey Supporters Trust’, in order to take ownership of Portsmouth Football Club.

At the end of 2011, Verisona began the preparatory work so that when Portsmouth FC (2010) Ltd was officially placed in Administration in March 2012, PCFC was ready to hit the ground running.

The firm has worked tirelessly with P C FC and its partners to create and submit the bid and conducted long and, at times, robust negotiations with the Administrators that eventually resulted in it achieving preferred bidder status. There then rose the immense challenge of carrying out all Due Diligence, including the examination of all contractual liabilities, and negotiating agreements with the football authorities. This included the Premier League in relation to outstanding parachute payments and particularly satisfying the Football League (and the FA) in relation to the transfer of the (so called) Golden Share and the terms for admission of PCFC as a member. There were also complex negotiations with the Professional Footballers Association in relation to the monies owed to former players. Successful conclusion of these negotiations was critical in ensuring a smooth transition of ownership.

Verisona also managed the collection, recording and accountability of over £1.5 million of contributions made by fans who pledged their financial support.

Finally, the firm liaised with administrators acting for owners of the land around Fratton Park together with the local council, the proposed developer and many other stakeholders, keeping everyone together and on the same page before even facing the opposition.

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