Venky's wrap up Rovers takeover

Published Nov. 19, 2010 6:15 p.m. ET

In a statement, the club's board confirmed the sale of the Jack Walker Trust's 99.9% shareholding in the club to the company owned by the Rao family of India. Venky's paid £23million for the shares, according to the statement. "We are very pleased to be passing on the Rovers to the Rao family," said Paul Egerton-Vernon, chairman of the Jack Walker Settlement Trustees. "We have been impressed with their enthusiasm for the club and their plans and ideas for future investment to develop it further as well as their wish and commitment to preserve the legacy of Jack Walker." Egerton-Vernon added that Venky's would keep in place the club's current management team, led by chairman John Williams. Venky's - short for Venkateshwara Hatcheries Group - set only modest targets for the club during the takeover process, but sounded more ambitious on Friday. "We are all truly honoured to be working with such an historic club and are committed to creating a long-term financial platform which the club can use to realise its obvious potential on and off the field," said Venkateshwara Rao, joint managing director of Venky's. "It is as a team that this club has succeeded in the past and it is as a team that this club will achieve great things in the future." Speaking before the deal went through, Rovers boss Sam Allardyce said he hoped the deal could propel the club forward "It would be very disappointing if it wasn't somebody that wanted to take over the club and try to improve it as quickly as possible," Allardyce said. "The best way to improve a football club in the early stages is the first-team results. "We all know we have been short of a bit of investment in the last few years. "Since the trust has tried to sell the club they haven't been willing to fund the sort of transfers needed to keep the club improving. "That's put it in danger of maybe being in the throes of selling your best players and threatened with relegation."