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Jun 19, 2012

Smith withdraws Rangers offer

Walter Smith has announced that the consortium he heads have withdrawn their £5.5 million bid for Rangers football club, following the rejection of their offer last Thursday.

Smith revealed that there has since been a counter offer by the successful Charles Green led consortium, inviting their involvement, but the two parties failed to find common ground within their business plans.

The withdrawal allows the Green consortium to continue unhindered with their bid to take over the club, following "verbal assurances" given to their bidding rivals.

Smith said in a statement: "I would like to clarify the background to the offer of £6million for the assets of the club which I announced on Thursday, June 14 2012. The offer was made to the administrators before the Charles Green consortium had concluded their transaction to acquire the assets at £5.5m from the administrators.

"We felt it necessary to have a fall-back position to secure the club's future. We have since made the same offer of £6m to the Green consortium through Zeus Capital. Our offer has been rejected and they have made a counter-offer inviting us to join their consortium.

"However, the current business plan is not in accord with our understanding of the present circumstances of the club and the way forward, but we would prefer to leave them to proceed in their own way and we wish them good luck in their endeavours."

The Smith-led consortium had revealed a dramatic final day bid for Rangers on Thursday, with failure to agree a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) consigning the club to liquidation.

Green and his investors subsequently completed the purchase of the assets of Rangers as a newco for £5.5million and were urged by the former Rangers boss to consider a quick sale.

However, Smith - who stressed their initial offer to administrators Duff and Phelps was made before Green's acquisition was completed - is now prepared to step aside following "verbal assurances'' provided by the new regime.

The statement continued: "Members of our consortium had met with Charles Green and Zeus Capital prior to the CVA meeting and it had been agreed that we would be provided with significant information which would give us comfort as to the identity of the consortium members, their strategy and their funding capacity. This information had not been forthcoming by the date of our offer.

"We are therefore withdrawing completely from the process to enable Charles Green and his consortium to move forward. We very much hope the verbal assurances they provided to us - and the public statements made - are adhered to and that the club will therefore be financed and managed with appropriate governance and can go forward in a sustainable manner. We wish the new Rangers Football Club every good fortune."

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