Revealed! Sunderland AFC’s REAL worth under Stewart Donald as takeover talks continue
Stewart Donald is seeking a new owner for Sunderland AFC - but what are the club REALLY worth?
Donald publicly placed the club up for sale earlier this month, and is hopeful of completing a deal to sell his majority stake in the Black Cats in a matter of weeks.
But what is the true valuation of the club in the current market?
Donald told supporters at the Red & White Army Supporters Collective meeting on December 4 that he estimated the club to be worth ‘approximately £30-50million’ - and football finance expert Kieran Maguire of the University of Liverpool believes the lower end of that bracket is a ‘realistic’ valuation.
“I think £40million is an asking price, rather than a final price,” he said, speaking to the Echo.
“If he gets £40million for it, fair play to him - he must be a very good salesman.
“I appreciate it’s a big ground with fantastic support, buy money from fans is far less than people envisage in the grand scheme of things.
“You would pay a premium for the potential to get 47,000 people in the ground, and you would factor that in, but on the downside until they are selling-out every week you have the overheads of a 47,000 capacity stadium every week.
“I think £30million is more realistic, and is a fair price for both parties.”
That valuation could, however, change in the short-term - particularly if Sunderland mount a successful promotion push and seal a return to the Championship.
“If they go on a fantastic run and are in the top two by the end of March, then you could probably add a bit more on to that,” explained Maguire.
“Whoever is buying Sunderland is buying it on the basis of it being a Championship club - whether it’s there now, or at the end of the season or in two seasons.
“It’s like buying a house with planning permission for an extension - you factor that in because you can do things with it.”