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Dec 28, 2012

New consortium in Birmingham takeover talks

Peter Pannu has confirmed he is in talks with a second Hong Kong consortium to sell Birmingham City - with doubts remaining over a deal with Gianni Paladini's Italian group.

Birmingham's acting chairman admits he has been left deflated by the collapse of Charles Chan's potential £40 million buy-out of Carson Yeung.

Chan the head of Hong Kong's top television broadcaster had formed a consortium including the powerful Shanghai Media and Entertainment Group, but pulled out of the race after months of negotiations.

"The fans also know that my preferred party, which was reported in the media, the Charles Chan and SMEG group, unfortunately did not transpire, but we still have another very big party we are dealing with in Hong Kong," said Pannu in an extensive interview with the Birmingham Mail.

Pannu admitted he has met with representatives of Paladini's group at St Andrew's, but no agreement has been reached on the Italian's £30 million bid.

And Pannu insists he must be given full details of all members of the Italian consortium before he can attempt to move forward with discussions.

"I had a representative here from his group," said Pannu. "We met. We had a chat. He was not willing to indicate to me who this consortium consisted of. I am not even sure if Paladini is the purchaser. I know not.

"Paladini's name is mentioned. I don't even know now whether he is part of the consortium or whether he is just a broker doing a deal. They know my priorities as to how I want this to be done.

"They have got to give me indications of who they are, they have got to give me a vision of what they have got for the club, they have to disclose to me who this consortium consists of.

"What's the point of doing a deal with me and locking me at a price and eventually telling me the group consists of these six people and out of them two, for various reasons, I don't like or perhaps I feel are not the suitable persons to take the club forward?

"Is it putting the cart before the horse? That's not the way. It should be the horse leading the cart. That is the position. But that doesn't mean we have fallen out. It simply means that I am telling the fans a bit more.

"The price is mooted around £30 million, yes. The headline figure is around £30 milllion. But there are other dynamics at play."

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