Port Vale: Contractual issues hit Blue Sky share investment
FANS' representatives fear Port Vale's £5m investment from Blue Sky International is in doubt after the club admitted part of the deal has run into trouble.
The club say a £150,000 share investment from the American company has stalled over "contractual issues".
However, supporters are concerned the failure so far to push through that part of the deal has put a question mark over the rest of the £5m investment.
That cash was earmarked for developing training facilities, finishing the Lorne Street Stand and developing the Robbie Williams Suite.
The Sentinel tried to contact Hank Julicher, the chief executive of Blue Sky, but he wasn't available to say whether the £5m investment will definitely go ahead.
However, Vale chief executive Deakin says the problem does not mean the entire Blue Sky Investment deal is dead.
The club has issued a statement saying 'the projects announced around investment from Blue Sky remain in place'.
Alan Baker, spokesman for supporter group Black and Gold, said: "I think most fans will be wondering what is happening at the club.
"We need to know whether the deal is a goer or not."
Malcolm Hirst, spokesman for North London Valiants, said: "If they haven't received £150,000 yet, which was supposed to have already been there, then how can they expect to get the rest of the money?"
Mark Rutter is founder of the Starve 'Em Out group which campaigned against the old Vale board, led by chairman Bill Bratt. He says he is not convinced by the new board, led by chairman Peter Miller, pictured below.
He said: "The new directors don't seem any better than the old ones.
"If this investment comes off they have my backing, but I'm concerned."
Deakin has promised to give supporters a detailed account of Vale's relationship with Blue Sky at the club's annual meeting, but this has been moved back from the usual December slot until February 8.
Deakin has revealed building work on the Robbie Williams Suite has been delayed, but says this is because of logistical issues not connected to the Blue Sky investment.
Yesterday's statement reads: "Following speculation regarding the partnership between Port Vale and Blue Sky International (BSI) the club wishes to clarify the position.
"Cash investment from BSI (£150,000) has encountered contractual issues, which are being dealt with by chairman Peter Miller and vice-chairman Mike Lloyd.
"The projects announced around investment from BSI remain in place and the club continue to progress these without delay.
"New investment was also recently announced from club directors (£350,000) and this is unaffected by the on-going BSI discussions.
"Perry Deakin will present a full and detailed report regarding our partnership with BSI as part of the upcoming annual meeting.
"The board of directors continue to work hard to stabilise the club and progress off the field over the last few months has been significant, particularly across commercial operations – this progress will continue in order that the club can realise its short and long-term ambitions.
"The club is sympathetic towards the concerns of its supporters in this matter and is working for a successful conclusion. As such, it appeals to all fans to be patient and as soon as the club is able to update on this matter, it will do so.
"No further comment will be made regarding BSI investment until the issues currently being dealt with are concluded."
Questions left unanswered over Vale investment deal: Page 42