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NEWS RELEASE 18th January 2006


Unanimous approval by Manly Warringah Board to allow Penn Sport to purchase the majority of the outstanding shares in the club

 Penn Sport has purchased the majority of the outstanding shares in the Manly Warringah Sea Eagles Limited today for an undisclosed sum after unanimous approval by the Board to proceed with the sale. The investment by Penn Sport comes at an important time for the Sea Eagles and ensures Manly’s financial security well into the future.

At the completion of the transaction both Penn Sport and Max Delmege, who increased his shareholding at the same time, will each own a little under 40% of the club with the remainder owned by the Football Club Members. Both major shareholders continue to view the increased shareholding ability of the Football Club as critical to the long term success of the Sea Eagles and have agreed a process for that to take place.

The Board of the Sea Eagles will now increase to 9 with the four major stakeholders, Penn Sport, Delmege, MWRLFC and Manly Leagues Club all having the right to appoint two directors. An Independent Chairman will be elected by the eight directors.

Given the requirement for “independence” the current Manly Leagues Club Executive Chairman Paul Cummings today has resigned his position as Executive Chairman of the Sea Eagles. He will remain on the Sea Eagles Board as a Manly Leagues Club appointee.

“I’m extremely proud to have served as Executive Chairman of the Sea Eagles this past year and I look forward to continuing my involvement as a director and as Chairman of the Leagues Club. We’re fortunate to have two partners who are willing to invest in the long term future of Manly and are absolutely, passionately committed to its success.”

“The loyalty of Max Delmege to the club speaks for itself and the Penn family are life long fans and passionate supporters of the Sea Eagles. Penn Sport also has a depth of experience in sponsorship and sports management and will add value to the club and be of enormous advantage in moving the club forward.”

“I’m also very proud to announce that the Leagues Club has agreed to continue to propagate to the game of Rugby League in our area to the tune of $3,000,000 over the next three years.”


CEO of Penn Sport, Scott Penn said:

“This is an important day for the future of the Manly Sea Eagles. Penn Sport were instrumental in initiating the privatisation process more than two years ago and has been actively involved in the club ever since. We are very pleased to be involved in helping to secure a strong future for the club both on and off the field.”

“Having been on the Board for the past two years I have seen first hand the tremendous transformation of the club to a best practice sporting organisation. The Penn family looks forward to being an integral part of the future of the Manly Sea Eagles.”

“With the strength of the existing Board, Penn Sport’s Marketing and Sports Management skills, plus the strongest team of players and coaching staff in many years we can’t wait for the 2006 season to kick off.”


Manly Football Club Chairman Kerry Sibraa said:

“The Football Club is looking forward to working together with all stakeholders. We have the utmost respect for the Penn family and Max Delmege. We are delighted with the arrangements that have been put in place to enable us to increase our shareholding via our membership drive.”


Max Delmege said:

“The members placed an enormous amount of trust in the privatisation process when they voted in December 2003. Today that structure has been vindicated with the purchase of the outstanding shares in the Sea Eagles. I’m committed to this organisation more than ever and will continue to be the Major sponsor in 2006 and beyond. I welcome Penn Sport to the register and look forward to working closely with them and both the Football Club and the Leagues Club.”

Mr Joe Cross was today unanimously elected as Chairman of the Sea Eagles. He has already served as Chairman from July 2003 to July 2005.


Joe Cross said:

“I’d like to thank Paul Cummings for his dedication and commitment to the organisation not only during his time as Executive Chairman but for the critical roles he has played in various executive positions since 2002 to ensure the long term viability of the Sea Eagles.”

“I welcome the Penn family onto the register and look forward to chairing this great club in 2006.”

“We are a stronger team on and off the field as we set our sights on the 2006 premiership. Today’s announcement is great news for our fans!”

Further information:

Contact Peter Peters.