Bulls takeover confirmed
The long-running saga over the future of ailing Bradford Bulls was brought to a successful conclusion on Friday night when the administrators confirmed the sale of the Super League club to local businessman Omar Khan.
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Brendan Guilfoyle, partner at the Leeds-based P&A Partnership and joint administrator at Bradford since June 26, revealed in a statement that he had completed the sale of Bradford Bulls Holdings Limited to OK Bulls Limited for an undisclosed sum.
The sole director of OK Bulls Limited is Omar Khan, who owns the award-winning Bradford restaurants and catering business under his name.
Gerry Sutcliffe, MP for Bradford South and a former Sports Minister, is also involved with the business.
The RFL also fielded a bid from Bradford Park Avenue football club, while Super League (Europe) Ltd's offer to buy the Bulls was also on the table but this was always seen as a last resort.
Sutcliffe took to Twitter to say: "Thanks to all Bradford Bulls fans for your incredible patience and support. Hard work starts now. See you all tomorrow.
"And thanks also to (coach) Mick Potter, coaching staff, players and all club staff. (They've) shown devotion above and beyond the call."
Khan is thought to have paid around £150,000 to take the club out of administration but it will obviously cost a great deal more to take the club forward and they are still waiting to discover if they will retain their place in Super League.
Guilfoyle said: "This is a great achievement for Bradford Bulls, the players, fans and the city of Bradford.
"My main duty as administrator is to get the best return for creditors - and this was the best deal on the table.
"Omar Khan has also passed the Rugby Football League's test as being a 'fit and proper person' to run a rugby club as well as being a passionate fan of the Bulls."
Guilfoyle was originally brought in by former chairman Chris Caisley in April to conduct an independent financial review following the resignation of directors Peter Hood and Andrew Bennett and has been in charge of the four-times Super League champions for the last two months.
One of his first acts was to lay off 16 full-time staff, including head coach Potter and his assistants Francis Cummins and Lee St Hilaire, although all three have continued to work unpaid.
Guilfoyle added: "I am really pleased that we were able to retain the playing squad without selling off young stars - which in the end was a crucial decision to achieve the sale.
"There are many people to thank in making this deal possible, not least employees, coaches and the interim chief executive who have all been working without pay.
"But I'm sure they would join me in saying the fans' support has been outstanding and they have played a major part in this rescue.
"And through all this the players have won an extraordinary string of matches."
The news will deliver a timely boost to Potter and his team as they take on Hull on Saturday night looking to complete a fourth straight win to keep alive their appearance in the play-offs for the first time in four years.