Sunderland FC is now debt free after Bridle Insurance CEO completes £40m deal

Bridle Insurance chief executive Stewart Donald has effectively completed his takeover of Sunderland FC for £40m.

The deal is expected to be completed this week following approval from the English Football League.

As part of the deal, former owner Ellis Short has written off all of Sunderland FC’s debt, worth over £100m.

Donald said: “We’ve given Ellis £40m, so that’s the deal, and in return, Ellis has tidied up his debt and that has now gone from the football club.

“Ellis was very clear he didn’t want the debt, but we didn’t want the debt either so we refused that. The reality is Sunderland is debt-free which, for the fans, is good news.”

The deal was first announced at the end of April, but in a media conference, Donald confirmed the deal had all but been completed.

Donald has also said that he would dissolve any business with non-league side Eastleigh, who he had invested over £7m into over the last six years.

He added: “The budget for Sunderland is going to be pretty hefty, and much more than of the teams that were promoted last season.

“There will be transfer fees involved, and that’s going to be a good budget for Sunderland, one that a few Championship clubs would like.”