Bates becomes Leeds owner

03 May 2011 06:00

Ken Bates has become the major shareholder of Leeds in a move that ends the mystery over the ownership of the club.

Bates, the club's chairman, has bought out FSF Limited through his company Outro Limited, Leeds confirmed in a statement.

Leeds say they hope the move will bring an end to "scaremongering" about the mystery of the ownership and "delivers the transparency sought".

An inquiry into football by a committee of MPs had put Leeds' ownership under the spotlight and the Premier League had said they would require full disclosure of the shareholders of the three offshore trusts that had owned FSF Limited.

Leeds said in a statement: "The scaremongering arising out of the football governance inquiry has not been helpful and, whilst the board were always confident that there were no issues, recognise the concern the unknown outcome of any Premier League questions may have on our members.

"To address this issue and in the hope that this brings an end to the speculation, the chairman, Ken Bates, has completed the purchase of FSF Limited for an undisclosed sum. FSF Limited is now owned by Outro Limited which is wholly owned by Ken Bates.

"This change in ownership structure makes Ken Bates the controlling shareholder of Leeds United and delivers the transparency sought."

The statement claimed there had been a "political obsession" over Leeds' ownership.

Leeds chief executive Shaun Harvey gave evidence to the inquiry in March where he told MPs the club's owners were a holding company called FSF Limited based in the West Indian island of Nevis, owned by three discretionary trusts.

The owners of these trusts were unknown, he said, but that they had appointed two men, Patrick Murrin and Peter Boatman, to run the club and they had asked Bates to be chairman.

Source: PA