LONDONLONDON (Reuters) - PCP Capital Partners, the investment firm run by British businesswoman Amanda Staveley, is interested in bidding around $400 million (£303.7 million) for Newcastle United after owner Mike Ashley put the Premier League club up for sale on Monday, according to a source familiar with the matter.
Speculation over Staveley's interest in the St James' Park club was sparked when she was seen at the ground watching a match earlier this month against Liverpool, another club she has been linked with buying in the past.
PCP Capital, which acts for investors in the Middle East and China, is one of four potential bidders for the club, the Financial Times reported on Tuesday. PCP is best known for acting as an intermediary between Barclays (BARC.L) and a group of Abu Dhabi investors during the 2008 financial crisis, helping the British bank avoid a government bailout.
Newcastle United did not respond to requests for comment.
PCP, which has not yet put in an offer for Newcastle United, believes the club is worth around 300 million pounds with a further 150 million pounds needed to invest in players over the next two years, according to the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal is not public.
The club has said they were willing to listen to offers that would be capable of "delivering sustained investment" towards achieving their ambitions in the top flight.
Newcastle have been relegated twice since Ashley took charge in 2007. After winning promotion back to the Premier League last season, Rafael Benitez's side are ninth in the standings with 11 points from eight games.
(Reporting By Ben Martin; Writing by Anjuli Davies; Editing by Rachel Armstrong)