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September 18, 2009

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Birmingham's top officials to step down after takeover

BIRMINGHAM chief executive Karren Brady, the highest ranking female executive in English football, will leave the Premier League club along with chairman David Sullivan if Carson Yeung completes his takeover.

Since taking charge of Birmingham when it was in financial administration in 1993, Brady and Sullivan have turned around the club's fortunes but announced on Wednesday that they have rejected Yeung's offer to stay on.

While Sullivan is leaving as chairman of Birmingham's holding company, David Gold is set to stay on as chairman of the club.

Yeung, the Hong Kong businessman who owns 29.9 percent of the club through Grandtop International Holdings, sent out official offer documents to shareholders on Tuesday. The first closing date of the offer is October 6.

"It was a hard decision for me to make to leave the club after so long but with the new change in ownership I feel the time will be right for me to move on and pursue my other ventures," said Brady, who has accepted a role on BBC show "The Apprentice."

"Grandtop have asked me to retain my position as CEO, but I honestly feel they must be allowed to stamp their own mark on the club and I believe that this is best done without the current board looking over their shoulder.

"I leave with very fond memories of the past 16 years; I arrived with David Sullivan in 1993 and I want to leave with him."

Brady hopes to continue working with Sullivan, who could now be on the lookout for a club to invest in.

"I intend to remain in football," Sullivan said. "So following the takeover I will be looking for a new challenge where my experience, my success and sound business acumen will make a difference."


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