ST MIRREN chairman Stewart Gilmour has revealed the club will definitely be under new ownership by the start of the season whether a proposed fans takeover is successful or not.
A Community Interest Company, 10,000 Hours, hopes to buy the 52% shareholding put up for sale by a group of directors, including Gilmour, using a £500,000 loan secured from Big Issue Invest, a social enterprise investor, as well as monthly and one-off contributions from supporters and other local groups.
Those leading the CIC have until next Friday to demonstrate that they have sufficient funds to meet the £1.5m asking price.
If they fail to do so, Gilmour will then turn to two other interested parties – both believed to be overseas-based investors – and conclude a deal with one of them.
"A deal will definitely be done this summer, no doubt about that," Gilmour said.
"The guys here (the selling consortium) are tired, some of them are struggling health-wise with it too.
"It's been going on for too long and it's time for a fresh start with new owners and a new board to take the club forward.
"I know we said to the St Mirren support that we would do everything we could to get a good group in to take over from us but I think we've exhausted that.
"There aren't local guys coming to us and offering the money required to take the club off our hands. And if they aren't making us an offer after three years, then they probably never will. So we have to look at other options."