West Ham co-owner Daniel Kretinsky has maxed out his stake in a firm and been told next step would have to be a full buyout.
There remains uncertainty at West Ham over whether Czech billionaire Kretinsky ever intends to launch a full takeover.
Last month marked the one-year anniversary since Kretinsky became West Ham’s second biggest stakeholder.
The “Czech Sphinx” paid a reported £150m for 27 per cent of West Ham last November and it was predicted his arrival would allow the Hammers to go bigger and better than before in the transfer market.
That certainly proved to be the case during an unprecedented summer which saw West Ham spend £170m on eight quality signings.
Kretinsky has repeatedly been linked with an eventual full takeover of West Ham (The Evening Standard).
And there has been speculation for years that David Sullivan and David Gold would sell their stakes in the Hammers in 2023.
Any sale by Sullivan and Gold before March 2023 would incur a cost as part of the deal which saw West Ham move from Upton Park to the London Stadium.
It was agreed that if Sullivan and Gold sold the club for more than £300million before that date, 20 per cent of any profit would go to the ground’s landlord, the London Legacy Development Corporation.
Some West Ham fans were disappointed recently when an insider with close links to the Hammers boardroom insisted the club ‘will not be taken over in April as many have been expecting’.
He has however been making moves in the business world of late including another significant one this week.
West Ham co-owner Kretinsky has maxed out his stake in a Dutch firm and is told the next step would have to be a full buyout.
According to Reuters and Nasdaq citing a regulatory filing from last week, Kretinsky has now accumulated a 31.4% stake in Dutch mail and packages delivery company PostNL PTNL.AS.
Kretinsky’s stake has increased from 25.02% in January, the filing by the Authority for Financial Markets (AFM) showed.
PostNL shares were up 2.9% at 1.85 euros at 0948 GMT on Euronext Amsterdam.
“ING analyst Marc Zwartsenburg said in a note that Kretinsky increased his stake to 29.9% before PostNL cancelled shares it had acquired in a share buy-back on Nov.22, leading to a further increase,” Reuters and Nasdaq report.
“Under Euronext rules, Kretinsky will be unable to purchase further shares without making a buyout offer for PostNL.”
The site reports that Kretinsky’s Luxembourg investment vehicle Vesa Equity, which holds the shares, was approached for comment but could not be reached.