Broughton bid to buy Tote?

09/12/2010

The Guardian reports today that Martin Broughton, the businessman credited with ousting George Gillett and Tom Hicks from Liverpool Football Club, is believed to be preparing for a possible return to racing with a bid to buy the Tote, the state-run betting operation.

Broughton, who has been a racehorse owner for many years, was chairman of the British Horseracing Board from 2004 to 2007, having spent 28 years as a senior executive for British American Tobacco. He stepped down as chairman of Liverpool after successfully overseeing the club’s sale to John Henry, the owner of the Boston Red Sox baseball team, in order to launch Sports Investment Partners, a private equity firm looking to invest in a range of business opportunities in the sports sector.

The Tote, which has a monopoly on pool betting in the UK, also owns nearly 550 off-course betting shops. Initial expressions of interest in acquiring its business need to be lodged by tomorrow, with the sale price – half of which was promised to racing by the previous government – expected to be at least £225m.

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