The reports suggest that talks are at an advanced stage and the deal would include Mike Ashley selling the Rangers replica kit through his Sports Direct stores.
Charles Green led a consortium that paid £5.5 million to buy the assets of Rangers from liquidation in June and it is claimed that he has negotiations the talks with Sports Direct and that, “Talks are at an advanced stage and the deal should be signed in the next few days”, according to The Herald’s source.
When you look further into the deal you can see why it would work on so many levels for Mike Ashley. A massive club fallen on hard times and the chance to buy in at a cheap as chips price with great prospects of potential resale value.
The merchandise side of it though explains even more, naturally the opportunity to dominate the Rangers replica kit sale is attractive by itself but when you learn that Ashley’s ‘rival’ JJB signed a £48 million deal in 2006 to sell the Old Firm club’s merchandise on an exclusive basis over the following 10 years.
That contract is believed to have lapsed when Rangers went into liquidation and this deal would underline just how total the Ashley domination of sports retail is in the UK – the current relative values of the two operations has Sports Direct worth getting on for £2Billion which dwarfs JJB’s current £22m valuation.
A source close to Mike Ashley told The Herald: “Mike has a great business. He certainly knows what he is doing on the merchandising, on the logistics front, that is for sure. Mike will want to get JJB out of the way and pick up the merchandise. It gets him a seat at the table”.
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