Hardball (company)

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Hardball is a Norwegian investment company founded in 2004 to finance player transfers for the association football team SK Brann from Bergen, Norway. Former news editor at Norwegian TV 2 and managing director of software company Vizrt, Bjarne Berg, fronted Hardball and was one of several members of the investors group until his death in 2010.

Eivind Kåre Lunde is the company's Managing Director.

When a Hardball financed player is sold, Hardball is to have their investment back after expenses are withdrawn. Any profits are to be divided 50-50 between Hardball and Brann. Hardball has no ownership in Brann, and the power to sell or trade players stays with the club.

The investors are predominantly local businessmen from Bergen and are known Brann supporters, and have expressed desire to help Brann becoming a top class team. According to Bjarne Berg, the company's long-term goal is to make itself redundant without losing money in the process.[1]

The company has partially or fully financed the following player transfers:

Note! All transfer fees are approximates.

Bought from Date Transfer fee (NOK) Player Transfer fee (NOK) Date Sold to
Bryne December 2003 2.200.000 Ragnvald Soma 6.000.000 March 2006 Viking
Northern Spirit February 2004 750.000 Dylan Macallister 750.000 March 2006 Lyn
Salzburg August 2004 5.000.000 Paul Scharner 32.000.000 January 2005 Wigan Athletic
Stabæk December 2004 10.000.000 Martin Andresen Free transfer November 2007 Vålerengen
KR Reykjavik December 2004 1.000.000 Kristján Örn Sigurðsson Free transfer January 2010 Hønefoss
Ham-Kam November 2005 10.000.000 Petter Vaagan Moen Free Transfer January 2011 Queens Park Rangers
FH Hafnarfjarðar August 2006 2.000.000 Ármann Smári Björnsson Free transfer August 2009 Hartlepool United
Vålerenga August 2006 7.000.000 Ardian Gashi 6.000.000 July 2007 Fredrikstad
Leeds August 2006 5.000.000 (sign on fee) Eirik Bakke Free transfer January 2011 Sogndal Fotball
Rosenborg March 2007 6.000.000 Jan Gunnar Solli Free transfer January 2011 New York Red Bulls
Løv-Ham July 2007 2.500.000 Knut Walde Contract expired January 2010 -
Elfsborg July 2007 2.500.000 Joakim Sjöhage Undisclosed November 2008 Trelleborg
Free transfer July 2007 Unknown (sign on fee) Hassan El Fakiri - - -
Benfica August 2007 3.000.000 Azar Karadas 2.000.000 September 2009 Kasımpaşa

Investors of Hardball: [2]

  • Svein Ove Strømmen - IT
  • Rolf Westfal-Larsen - Shipping
  • Eivind Kåre Lunde - Managing Director of Hardball
  • Bjarne Berg - Managing Director of Hardball
  • Reidar Andreas Madsen - Real estate and supermarkets
  • Oddvar Leiv Holmedal - Catering
  • Arne Veidung - Importer of wine and liquor
  • Tor-Inge Måkestad - Fruit and vegetable importer
  • Per Jæger - Automobile sales
  • Knut Herman Holler Gjøvaag - Automobile sales
  • Hermund Sigfred Linde - Real estate
  • Bjarne Davidsen - IT
  • Karl Kvalheim - Shipping broker
  • Arne Viste - Shipping
  • Tore Brynjulfsen - Real estate

References[edit]

  1. ^ Mads Kvernen Kleppe (2007). "Brukte 17 millioner på Brann-spillere" (in Norwegian). abcnyheter.no. Retrieved 2007-11-05. 
  2. ^ «Gutteklubb» vil kjøpe gullet, Nettavisen, September 8, 2006(Norwegian)