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03rd Jul 2017

Witness statement about Mike Ashley’s meetings brings forth greatest story ever told

Is there such a thing as a triumphant vomit? You bet your arse there is

Darragh Murphy

Mike Ashley, ladies and gents.

Investment banker Jeffrey Blue is in the midst of a lawsuit against Sports Direct boss Mike Ashley, who also owns Newcastle United, and the witness statement delivered in London’s High Court on Monday is the stuff of absolute dreams.

Mr Blue alleges that Mr Ashley had promised to pay him £15 million if Mr Blue was able to increase Sports Direct’s share price to £8 but only ended up paying £1 million.

Mr Ashley denies the allegation.

Claims made in court of Mr Ashley falling asleep under boardroom tables during meetings were made to suggest unprofessionalism on his part but one witness statement, in particular, stood out.

Not only did it stand out, but it will stand the test of time, if true.

The court heard that one management meeting reportedly took place at a pub, The Green Dragon, in Alfreton and the alleged series of events is beyond extraordinary and will make you yearn for the days that you will experience a business meeting like this.

“These meetings were like no other senior management meeting I had ever attended in all my years of investment banking experience,” Mr Blue told the Court.

“It was effectively a ‘pub lock-in’ with alcohol continuing to be served well beyond closing hours and fish and chips or kebabs being provided throughout the evening.

“On one such evening, in front of his senior management team, Mr Ashley challenged a young Polish analyst in my team, Pawel Pawlowski, to a drinking competition.

“Mr Ashley and Pawel would drink pints of lager, with vodka ‘chasers’ between each pint, and the first to leave the bar area for whatever reason was declared the loser.

“After approximately 12 pints and chasers Pawel apologised profusely and had to excuse himself.

“Mr Ashley then vomited into the fireplace located in the centre of the bar, to huge applause from his senior management team.”

Poor Pawel!

The hearing continues.