Leyton Orient have today been bought by the boss of Dunkin’ Donuts, meaning that they can start to move on from their recent troubles.
As I reported recently, they’ve been struggling to guarantee they’ll even compete in the National League next season, but the news today brings a sense of relief and joy to the long-suffering fans of the League’s most recent crisis club.
Nigel Travis, a lifelong Orient fan, has bought out Becchetti along with a company called Eagle Investments 2017. Becchetti had been urged to sell up by fans in the wake of catastrophic decline that saw them relegated to non-league level at the end of last season and face a winding-up order.
Travis is chairman and chief executive of Dunkin’ Brands, the American company that owns Dunkin’ Donuts, and he spoke of his joy at being able to intervene and help the club he has supported for so long.
“I have been a passionate Leyton Orient supporter for my entire life and feel a great sense of responsibility to the players, the staff, the fans and the community. We have challenges in front of us, and I am not underestimating those. However, over the long-term, we believe we can return the Club to the Football League.”
The next moves for Orient include appointing a Chief Executive, and getting season tickets on sale, which as yet has not happened thanks to the uncertainty under the Italian owner.
Becchetti bought Orient from Barry Hearn in 2014 but has seen them drop two divisions in three years and fall into severe financial difficulties. He made his money in recycling, but Orient fans feel all he did with them was throw them away like trash. Now they face a brighter future, albeit in the National League.