Bloemfontein Celtic have “several” offers for the clubs’ Absa Premiership status and one of them has now been revealed to the Siya crew.
The Free State-based outfit owner Max Tshabalala has been keen to sell Phunya Sele Sele for some time now, but potential buyers have often walked out of the deal at the last minute – their vocal supporters have also been against the sale.
But Tim Sukazi, the owner and chairman of TS Galaxy, has been confirmed as one of a number of interested parties in the purchase of the Celtic top-flight status.
“We are waiting for Mr Sukazi to give us proof of funds,” said Mandla Tshabalala, who is the cousin and lawyer of the Celtic boss.
“The Premier Soccer League will be involved in this much later when the two parties have signed and payments are made – PSL is the last step. We are going to need to see a proof of funds, either a bank guarantee or money in his trust account then we can begin the process, such as due diligence and whether it is feasible for him to take the team. But until we can reach that stage, because everyone wants to buy a PSL team and might not have the money, we can’t take this any further. Mr Sukazi has made an offer and its’ not the first time.”
Mandla added that Sukazi, who himself confirmed talks with Celtic in a recent radio interview, had approached the club a year ago, but the deal did not materialise.
“It’s not just him. I can’t mention others, but there are several, who are still very quiet about it because of confidentiality. As you know, whoever brings funds first, you consider them,” the lawyer told the Siya crew.
Asked whether the deal would not be halted by any lingering debts, much like when potential buyers Sinki Leshabane and Dr Moeketsi Mosola pulled out of buying Celtic because of Tshabalala’s R43-million SARS debt in September 2018, Mandla suggested that new owners would have to navigate that stumbling block.
“I don’t think those buyers had the money at the time. The biggest debt is SARS, that’s public knowledge, and I am sure Celtic is not the only team that owes SARS. But you bring them (new owners) on board to say we are selling the team for R40-million and we ask SARS how much Max owes them. Then you give Max his R20-million and pay SARS their debt, for example – if you really want to buy,” argued Mandla.
“Those issues should not stop you from buying a team because there are always business transactions happening and SARS is involved and there’s the competitions committee. We have learnt from those experiences, that if someone cannot give us a proof of funds, then we can’t disclose the clubs’ confidential issues. What happened then was that the potential buyers turned around and used that information against Celtic. We are cautious now.”
Recent reports have also suggested TTM owner Masala Mulaudzi is keen on making Celtic an offer having confirmed that he is selling his club and aiming for a top-flight status.
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