Birmingham International Holdings (BIH), the investment firm of jailed businessman Carson Yeung Ka-sing, announced yesterday it had received a non-binding offer from a third party in relation to a possible acquisition of a 24 per cent interest in Birmingham City Football Club.
The company said the third party had offered to acquire its 96.64 per cent owned subsidiary, Birmingham City, which owns the English soccer club.
"Given the company's intention to continue to operate as a listed company, and accordingly to fulfil all relevant sufficiency of operations requirements under the listing rules, it is the board's view that, if a disposal was to be agreed, only up to 24 per cent interest in [the soccer club] should be disposed of," BIH said.
Trading in the shares of BIH on the Hong Kong stock exchange was suspended yesterday, pending the announcement. The company has applied for the resumption of trading today.
Yeung, who was sentenced to six years in prison in March for laundering HK$721 million through five Hong Kong bank accounts between 2001 and 2007, has resigned from all his positions with Birmingham City.
The 53-year-old former hairdresser bought the soccer club in 2009 for HK$731 million. But two years later the club was relegated from the English Premier League and later that year Yeung was arrested for money laundering.
Birmingham City narrowly avoided relegation to the third tier of English soccer this year after drawing with Bolton Wanderers in the final game of their season.