West Ham United have been taken over by an asset management company called CB Holding. The Hammers, whose previous chairman Bjorgolfur Gudmundsson lost the vast majority of his $1.1 billion fortune in the Icelandic financial collapse, have become the third Premiership club to change hands since the end of last season. Andrew Bernhardt, a senior director with Straumur Bank, becomes the club's new non-executive chairman and has pledged that there will be no further cost-cutting at the club. Gianfranco Zola's men were forced to part company with Craig Bellamy bringing an end to the big spending that brought the likes of Bellamy, Kieron Dyer, Scott Parker and Julien Faubert to the club. Gudmundsson said: "I want to thank everybody at Upton Park for unforgettable years. As my fortunes have changed I now have to withdraw from the board of directors...I will remain forever a West Ham fan and hope I will have many returns to West Ham." The new owners have promised to make money available to help West Ham build on their 9th place finish last season. Bernhardt has assured fans that "we will sanction investment in new players, but all within the parameters of sensible budgeting." His principle focus is "an initial two-year plan, which includes improving the infrastructure at the club" as West Ham count the cost of Gudmundsson's expensive reign.
8 June 2009
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