North Sydney Bears preparing a $7 million takeover bid of the Titans

Discussion in 'General Rugby League' started by rhugh89, Mar 14, 2017.

  1. rhugh89

    rhugh89 Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Aug 12, 2012
    North Sydney Bears preparing a $7 million bid to take over the Gold Coast Titans

    Dean Ritchie, Exclusive, The Daily Telegraph
    March 14, 2017 6:02am
    Subscriber only

    THE North Sydney Bears are preparing an audacious $7 million bid to take over the Gold Coast Titans and rejoin the NRL.

    The Daily Telegraph can reveal Bears officials — led by general manager and former Test star Greg Florimo — have opened top-secret dialogue with the NRL about acquiring the financially-struggling Titans.

    Part of the deal would include Gold Coast undergoing yet another identity change by wearing Norths’ traditional red and black colours and being called the Gold Coast Bears.

    Norths officials have already “sounded out” the NRL, who own the Titans’ licence after the club went into voluntary administration in February 2015.

    The NRL is keen to offload the Gold Coast and is exploring all financial models.

    Bears officials have been closely — and quietly — monitoring the Titans’ financial plight in recent years. The main question though is whether $7 million would be enough to secure the Titans.

    It is understood the proposed buyout would include the new club playing three games a year in NSW, with two of those likely to be at the Bears’ latest home, Gosford, and the other at the club’s spiritual home, North Sydney Oval, as part of an NRL retro round.

    The remainder of the home games would be played at the Cbus Super Stadium on the Gold Coast.

    “There is interest from Norths,” one source, who declined to be named, said.

    “I think they are just waiting for the NRL to say they’re ready for the sale process to start. Norths are waiting for the green flag to be dropped so they could get their bid under way.”

    No official application from the Bears has been lodged with the NRL.

    After last playing in the NRL in 1999 before three years as part of the failed Northern Eagles joint venture with Manly, Bears officials fear the club will never gain stand-alone status again in a national competition.

    Negotiations have ramped up recently and are ongoing. No decision though is imminent.

    One well-placed source claimed talks were at a “delicate” stage but an NRL spokesman said despite owning the Titans for two years, the club wasn’t actually on the market.

    “The NRL has always said it is not a long-term owner of the Titans,” the spokesman said. “However, at this stage, we have not put the club on the market so we have not even considered any options yet.”

    Some NRL officials are concerned about another possible change of brand for the Gold Coast who, since their inception in 1988 have been known as the Giants, Seagulls, Gladiators, Chargers and now the Titans.

    “I’m not sure the NRL has an appetite for another name change for Gold Coast,” a source said.

    The profitable North Sydney Leagues Club already operates Seagulls Club in Tweed Heads.

    The Daily Telegraph contacted Florimo but he preferred not to comment.

    Gold Coast chief executive Graham Annesley would also not speak about the Bears’ approach.

    “As an employee of the club any comment on the sale process can only come from the current owners, the NRL,” Annesley said.

    The Bears currently play in the NSW Cup as South Sydney’s feeder club.
  2. member 2299

    member 2299 Andrew 'Joey' Johns

    Aug 16, 2009
    Nambucca Heads
    Titans was always a silly name and as the Bears own the Seagulls Footie Club, a great resolution.

    At the first game of the year, Northern Eagles V Knights at Gosford in February, 2000, Greg said he was always going to work for the Bears coming back into the NRL. They got the rough end of the pineapple in the so called 'merger'. Interesting the NRL are happy as pigs in mud to 'divest' themselves of us for $20 million or so, but no plans for the Titans. For one, I hope they do it.
    Lefty likes this.

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