Carson Yeung's takeover of Birmingham is effectively complete after his investment company Grandtop Holdings took their share ownership past the 90 per cent mark.
Grandtop can now complete a compulsory purchase on the remaining shares with a view to taking the club off the Alternative Investment Market and into private ownership.
The news represents the formal end of the David Sullivan, Ralph Gold and Karren Brady era at St Andrews, although David Gold is poised to remain as chairman.
A statement from Grandtop read: 'Grandtop is pleased to announce that, all conditions of the offer (for Birmingham City plc) having been satisfied or waived, the offer is hereby declared unconditional in all respects.
'As at 1pm on October 6, 2009, Grandtop owned or had received valid acceptances of the offer in respect of a total of 76,620,136 Birmingham City shares representing in aggregate approximately 94 per cent of the current issued share capital of Birmingham City.
'Birmingham City shareholders are reminded that because the level of offer acceptances has passed 90 per cent of the Birmingham City shares to which the offer relates, as set out in the Offer Document, Grandtop intends, as soon as practicable, to exercise its rights pursuant to sections 979 to 982 (inclusive) of the Companies Act 2006 to acquire compulsorily the remaining Birmingham City shares in respect of which the offer has not been accepted.'
Blues boss Alex McLeish insisted yesterday he was looking forward to working with Yeung, and said: 'We are looking forward to a new era. There is a buzz about the place and the fans and they are anticipating another step forward.
'I am looking forward to working with the new owners. I am ambitious and they are ambitious and, of course, if there is money to spend, we would welcome it. It is exciting times and something I have great anticipation for.'
Yeung is expected to be coming to England next week, and McLeish for one willbe keen to meet the new owner to hear his plans for the club.
He must now begin the job of winning over Blues supporters, after his failed takeover attempt during the 2007-08 season was widely viewed as a key factor inthe club's relegation from the Premier League and in the departure of thenmanager Steve Bruce.
Grandtop have left an open timetable to those shareholders who own theremaining six per cent of the share capital to return their certificates, so atthis stage there is no definite deadline by which Grandtop will have acquired100 per cent of the shares.
However, now the acquisition of the remaining shares has become compulsory, ithas become a matter of when, not if, the shares are bought.