Metro Mayor of the Liverpool Region, Steve Rotheram, has revealed that Everton no longer requires a £30m (€36m/$39m) loan from the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority (CA) to support the development of the Premier League club’s new stadium on Bramley-Moore Dock.
In September, the CA signed off on a funding package of up to £45m to support work linked to the project. A grant of up to £15m was announced to assist with infrastructure and heritage work, while a loan of up to £30m was also agreed to contribute towards the overall project for the stadium.
However, Rotheram has now revealed that Everton notified the CA earlier this year that it had found alternative sources of funding from the private sector and would therefore no longer require the £30m loan.
Rotheram said: “We are in contact with Everton about the next steps on the £15m grant that is intended to preserve the historical assets of Bramley-Moore Dock; support the wider development of the site; create jobs for local people; and attract visitors to the region.”
Last week, Everton announced that it had suspended all sponsorship arrangements with its Russian commercial partners, including USM, which held an exclusive option on the naming rights to its new stadium.
USM is a diversified Russian holding company with significant interests across the metals and mining, telecoms, technology and internet sectors, with its founder being Alisher Usmanov, the Uzbek-born Russian oligarch.
Rotheram’s announcement yesterday (Monday) confirmed that Everton’s decision to seek alternative sources of private-sector funding was made before the club ended its deal with USM.
In a statement reported by the Liverpool Echo newspaper, Rotheram said: “I believe the fact that Everton had to go to the private sector to secure better terms is testament to the competitive nature of the deal struck by the LCRCA.
“Notification of this change was due to be brought to the April meeting of the LCRCA, however, due to public interest in the deal following sanctions on Russian business interests in the UK, we have sought to bring this announcement forward.”
Everton last month commissioned venue specialist Forward Associates to create new fan experiences at its new stadium, which is currently being built at Bramley-Moore Dock. Forward Associates will work with Everton to design match-day hospitality packages and experiences at the stadium, which the club broke ground on in August last year.
Everton’s new stadium will have a capacity of 52,888 and is being built at a cost £500m. Building work on the stadium is expected to take around three years.