I also have some sympathy with your thoughts Andy, but I think there has to have been a reason why the negotiations took so long. My convoluted theory is as follows: When GFH entered into talks with Bates I believe they had a wealthy backer in the wings from the middle east as it is obvious that they alone do not have the financial clout needed to get LU back on an even keel. The demands made by Bates during the negotiations frightened the money man/men away, but GFH obviously thought they had a vehicle that could make money as and when they could remove Bates from the scene and have gambled on the fact that they will be able to achieve this. Aa we don't know the true story of the negotiations we will not know when Bates will be totally powerless and have to stop whatever demands he has put into the buyout. There is no doubt that GFH will have some extremely wealthy contacts in the middle east and possibly elsewhere and at some stage may well be able to attract the kind of investment that will make us all jump with joy. Until then I fear we have to endure the pergatory that is called Bates!