In recent days, both Farhad Moshiri and Josh Wander have promoted the relative merits of the proposed 777 partners takeover of Everton. I have written and podcasted extensively on the concerns I have regarding the resources and expertise that 777 could possibly bring to Everton and whether the flat multi-club model is appropriate for Everton’s needs.
As part of his justification for 777 partners being the appropiate new owners of Everton, Josh Wander, co-founder of 777 partners speaking to Alan Myers of Sky Sports in a report published on 16th October 2023 said the following:
“We’re humble enough to acknowledge that we don’t always get everything right the first time and we have learned a lot over the past few years. At the same time, I would challenge anyone to say we have not improved the sporting and financial performance of every club we’ve invested in, and done so in a fairly short period of time.”
The current 777 partners portfolio, their shareholding and acquisition date :
|Seville||Spain – La Liga||
Italy – Serie A
Belgium – Pro League
|Vasco de Gama||Brazil – Serie A||
|Hertha Berlin||Germany – Bundesliga 2||
|Melbourne Victory||Australia – A League||
|Red Star Paris||
France – National League
Using information published by 777 partners and Tifosy Capital and Advisory in a potential fund raising pitch to institutional investors published in September 2023, it’s interesting to see if their figures stand up to the claim.
Financial Performance Actual (A) and Estimated (E) plus League position for each of their holdings. Figures in € millions
|EBITDA &player trading||-2.8||-34.8||-44.9||-44.0||-47.9|
|EBITDA &player trading||40.7||47.7||-67.6||-50.6||-2.6|
|Vasco de Gama||EBITDA||-7.8||-3.8||-4.6||-8.9||-12.2|
|EBITDA &player trading||-3.2||8.2||5.7||-0.9||-7.8|
|EBITDA &player trading||3.8||21.6||-4.5||-4.7||-7.1|
|Red Star FC||EBITDA||-1.1||-2.2||-1||-3.4||-7.4|
|EBITDA &player trading||-0.9||-1.1||-0.9||-3.4||-7.4|
|Melbourne Victory FC||EBITDA||-1.2||-2||-1.5||-4||-4.1|
|EBITDA &player trading||-0.8||-1.6||-1.5||-4||-4.1|
|EBITDA & player trading||48.6||66.5||28.3||38|
Source: 777 Partners & Tifosy Capital & Advisory
The evidence above contradicts Josh Wander’s claim.
At best, the performance is patchy. There is definitely no evidence to support the notion that every club has improved its financial and footballing performance. That, and the concerns regarding business practices across the wider group, financing, sufficient management resources and the flat multi-club operating model do nothing to suggest 777 are the appropriate partners.
In an attempt to justify his choice of 777 as best option available to Everton, Moshiri claims:
The more time that I have spent with the 777 team, the more my confidence increases that we have found the right people to take the club forward in the modern era.
As I have discussed before, this has all the hallmarks of another colossal Moshiri misjudgement. The finances, timing and position our club finds itself in make it difficult to see viable options immidiately, but with so many institutional and high net worth investors seeking exposure to football generally and the Premier League specifically, the question as to why 777 partners are Moshiri’s choice remains unanswered as do the solutions to the critical condition we find ourselves in.
Ultimately, the progress of this deal will depend upon regulatory approval and 777’s ability to fund the acquisition and future capex requirements – both of which are still very much subject to doubt.
In the meantime, the claims supporting the proposed transaction, made by both leading parties, do not stand up to any form of scrutiny.