Did Stewart Regan Ken Then Wit We Ken Noo?

ByAuldheid

Did Stewart Regan Ken Then Wit We Ken Noo?

 

Thoughts and observations from watching and reading a transcript of Alex Thomson of Channel 4’s Interview with Stewart Regan (CEO of the SFA) Broadcast by Channel 4 on 29 March 2012.

http://www.channel4.com/news/we-run-football-were-not-the-police-sfa-boss

Introduction. I came across the above interview recently and listened to and transcribed it again as it reminded me of questions it raised then that the passage of time since has provided some insight into.

There is a lot to digest so the blog is broken into four sections.  Three parts cover the Interview plus what they seem to tell us now, knowing what was not known then viz:

  • Why No independent or independent element to the enquiry that became the Lord Nimmo Smith Commission. given the potential extent of the corruption at play?
  • Why no effective fit and Proper Person scrutiny and the absence of real governance?
  • EBTS and whether they constitute wrong doing and why that mattered so much and still does. plus
  • The “hard to not to believe” conclusions about the whole exercise with the benefit of what we ken noo.

There is also an Annex at the end with excerpts from the Lord Nimmo Smith Decision for ease of reference:

The comments (in bold italics) are based on what Regan said then and what we ken noo, either as facts or questions arising from them. It is a long read but hopefully readers will be enticed by this introduction to stay the course.

In the following “SR” is Stewart Regan CEO of the SFA and “AT” is Alex Thomson of Channel 4 News.

No Independent Enquiry?

SR No

AT I’m just curious as to why they wouldn’t. With something as big as this potentially this is the biggest corruption scandal in British sport, which is – a thought – and yet the SPL deem themselves fit to investigate themselves.

SR Well I think you are calling it potentially the biggest corruption case, at this stage there has been no wrongdoing proven.  There is an investigation going on

AT But you would accept that potentially, potentially that if guilty there is no question this is the biggest corruption scandal in British sport.

SR There is no wrongdoing as I said at the moment and there is nothing yet that has been established as far as the club registering players without providing the appropriate documentation, so I think it would   be wrong to jump to conclusions and even use words like corruption. You know there are a series of issues here. There are some footballing matters which are being dealt through the football authorities and there are tax mattes which are being dealt with through HMRC and there is to be a Tax Tribunal due to be heard as I’m sure you are aware in April.

So even before the investigation got underway Mr Regan was saying that it would be incorrect to assume that any wrong doing took place in terms of the registration process and use of ebts. He later expands on this point in relation to EBTs as a legitimate tax arrangement device. Given that the FTT did not rule until November 2012 that the ebts issued under the Murray Management Group Remuneration Trust (MMGRT) were legal then this stance by Mr Regan appears justifiable at the time of interview – but more on that later. 

AT I’m just wondering why at no stage anybody seemed, or perhaps they did, to think we need an independent body coming in this is big this is huge, potentially  we need somebody from the outside  or we are going simply going to be accused of investigating ourselves.

SR Well I think that might be one for you to ask the Scottish Premier League as far as their Board..

AT Well they appeal to you so I’m asking you.

SR   No as you said we are the right of appeal so if the club is concerned with any punishment it has been given well then they can choose to appeal to us. We as a body have the provision in our rules to carry out independent enquiries, indeed we did so very recently by appointing the Right Honourable Lord Nimmo Smith to carry out our own investigation into Rangers and we are part way through disciplinary proceedings and they will be heard on 29 March.

Given that player registrations are ultimately lodged with the SFA where Sandy Bryson has been doing the job for some years, I did wonder why the SFA were not the body taking the lead. They had the expertise on what turned out to be a key issue, the eligibility of players if misregistration occurred.  Indeed Sandy Bryson was called in to give a testimony to Lord Nimmo Smith that most folk involved in running a football team from amateur level upwards (as I was) had difficulty accepting. The Bryson interpretation suggested us amateurs had been daft not to take the risk of being found out if we did not register players correctly if only games from the point of discovery risked having results overturned. The Bryson interpretation on eligibility made no sense against that experience and it still does not to football lovers. I’m not sure if the rules have been amended to reflect the Bryson interpretation yet, but cannot see how they can be without removing a major deterrent that I always thought proper registration was there to provide.

The point about their having to be a body of higher appeal sounded plausible then, but could the Court of Arbitration on Sport not have been that body?  Or did that risk taking matters out of the SFA’s control even though it would have introduced an element of the independence that Alex Thomson raises in the following paragraphs in his interview?

AT But did anybody at any stage at the SFA say to you I have a concern that we need an independent body, that the SPL can’t and shouldn’t handle this?

SR Well under the governance of football the SPL run the competition

AT I’m not asking, I’m saying did anybody come to you at any stage and say that to you. Anybody?

SR No they didn’t as far as the SPL’s processes is concerned. The SPL ,

AT Never?

It is notable here that Alex Thomson pushes the point about lack of independence, which is where we enter “wit we ken noo territory”.  

Given that it is now known that SFA President Campbell Ogilvie sat on the Rangers FC Remunerations Policy Committee in September 1999 where it was decided Discount Option Scheme (DOS) ebts would be used as a matter of club remuneration policy using the Rangers Employee Benefit Trust (REBT).

Given that we know that Campbell Ogilvie instigated the first ebt payment to Craig Moore using the Discount Options Scheme.

Given that Ronald De Boer and Tor Andre Flo had both been paid using the same type of DOS ebt as Moore from 2000 to 2002/03 but accompanied by side letters, later concealed from HMRC  in 2005 and of course the SFA from August 2000.

Given that Mr Ogilvie was also in receipt of the later MMGRT ebts disputed by HMRC in the big tax case on which the FTT had still to rule

Given that Mr Regan must have been aware at time of interview that Sherriff Officers had called at Ibrox in August 2011 to collect payment of a tax bill, which means even to a layman that it must have gone past dispute to acceptance of liability and so crystallised sometime after 31st March 2011.

Given that Craig Whyte had already agreed to pay the wee tax bill in his public Takeover statement in early June 2011.

Given that on 7th December 2011 Regan had written to Andrew Dickson at RFC, who had sat on three of the four SFA/UEFA Licensing Committee meetings in 2011, to approve a draft statement by Mr Regan on the SFA’s handling of the UEFA Licence aspect of the wee tax case, which arose as a direct result of the use of the DOS ebts to Flo and De Boer during Dickson’s ongoing tenure at RFC from 1991.

Given that Campbell Ogilvie accompanied Stewart Regan to meet Craig Whyte at the Hotel De Vin on 15th December 2011 as a result of an invite stemming from that consternation causing draft that RFC thought likely to cause problems for the SFA (having agreed before the hotel meeting that no comment should be made on the wee tax case)

Given that the wee tax case was a direct result of those early types of DOS ebts being judged illegal by an FTT considering an appeal by the Aberdeen Asset Management company in 2010.

Given all of these facts, how credible is it that no conversation took place between Regan and Campbell Ogilvie on the requirement for an independent enquiry?

If a conversation did not take place as claimed, the question has to be should it have?

Given the foregoing facts on the early ebts, how credible is it Mr Regan during this interview did not know as a result of his involvement with the overdue payable and the UEFA licence in 2011 of the illegal and therefore wrong doing nature of those early EBTS with side letters concealed from the SFA and HMRC in 2005 just before Mr Ogilvie left RFC?

SR The SPL run, the SPL run the rules of The Scottish Premier League and they apply that. There are a whole host of people raising issues on internet sites and passing comment s about various theories that they have about Scottish football particularly in the West of Scotland. I think it’s important to establish that governance of Scottish football is managed by the appropriate body whether it is the Premier League, The Football League or the overall governing body. So that as far as we are concerned we let the   Scottish Premier league manage their own rules and if those rules are then broken and the club is charged they have the right of appeal to us as the Appellant body.

Given all of the now known facts listed above how credible is it that the reason given by Stewart Regan to Alex Thomson for the SFA being the appeal body was indeed the only one?

Given the foregoing how credible is it that Mr Regan was not aware that he was being economical with the truth during his interview or had he indeed been kept in the dark by others in the SFA?

Fit and Proper Person and Absence of Governance

AT Let’s talk about Craig Whyte. Ehm   – Presumably when Craig Whyte was mooted as coming in as the new owner – for the grand sum of £1 – for Rangers Football club, presumably the SFA took a keen interest in this and did some kind of due diligence on this man.

SR Well we have under our articles, Article 10.2, we have a process which sets out a number of criteria for what defines a fit and proper person within football. Now as you know we cannot stop people getting involved with a business and we cannot stop people getting involved with a PLC, all we can stop them doing is having an involvement with football, so what we do as part of that process is we ask for a declaration from the Directors of the club that they have a copy of the Articles,, that they have gone through the conditions and criteria within Article 10.2 and they have confirmed to us that they meet those criteria. If subsequently those criteria are breached then of course we take appropriate action.

AT You keep quoting rules back to me that’s not what I’m asking, I’m asking is did the SFA conduct any due diligence on this individual.

SR No we asked for a self-declaration from the Directors of the club and the individual himself.

AT Forgive me that sounds absolutely incredible this is the biggest club in Scotland which has been brought to its knees by a whole range of fiscal mismanagement, it is all on the record and proven. A new man comes in claiming all kinds of things, just like the previous man, and the SFA did not check or do any due diligence whatsoever.

SR That is part of the process of governing football, we

AT That’s, that’s NOT governing football that’s the exact opposite to governing football that’s running away from governing football.

SR No if you let me, if you let me finish my answer the point I am about to make is we govern the entire game from the top of the game down to grass roots. We have changes of Directors we have changes of ownership throughout the course of the year. I’m sure that if we were to spend football’s well earned money on doing investigations into potentially every change of Director, then there would be a lot of unhappy Chairmen out there.

AT You could have easily have googled (?) for free

SR Well we rely on the clubs telling us that the Articles have been complied with and that is the process we undertake.

AT This is extraordinary I say to you again  you have years of fiscal mismanagement at Rangers Football Club, a new man comes in you are telling me that nobody at The SFA as much as got on to Google  to get any background information nobody did anything ? That is extraordinary.

SR Well you refer to alleged years of financial mismanagement. I think it’s important to separate out the previous regime at Rangers and the new owner.

AT Rangers were a mess financially everybody new that

SR But I think it’s important in the case of the point you are raising regarding the fit and proper person test, to separate out the previous regime from the new owner. The club was in the process of being sold, they were challenging a tax bill that had been challenged by HMRC,* and the club had been sold to a new owner. That new owner had come in, he had purchased the club, the paper work for that sale had gone through and the club had complied with our Articles of Association. We run football we don’t, we are not the police we don’t govern transactions, we don’t govern fitness, we run football and we had asked the club to declare whether or not that person was fit to hold a place in association football. They had gone through the articles they’d signed to say that they had read those articles and that there had been no breaches of any of the points set out there. That included whether a Director had been disqualified. That wasn’t disclosed to us, indeed it did not come out until the BBC did their investigation back in October of last year.

(* note that in spite of all the “givens” listed earlier,  Mr Regan fails to distinguish (or appreciate) that there is more than one tax bill at play and the one for the wee tax case was not under challenge or Sherriff Officers would not have called in August 2011 to collect it.)

 AT So the BBC did due diligence on fitness (??) not the SFA?

SR No, as I said it came out in October 2010 primarily as a result of a detailed investigation. We then have to respond to potential breaches of our articles and we did that We entered into dialogue with the solicitor who was acting for Mr Whyte and we were in dialogue until February 2011 (?sic)  of this year when the club entered administration.

AT What I’m simply asking you to admit here is that the SFA failed and it failed Rangers in its hour of need over Craig Whyte and it failed Scottish football.

SR We didn’t fail.

AT You didn’t do anything, you said you didn’t do anything.

SR We complied with the current processes within our articles. That said I think there are a number of learnings and I think the same goes for football right across the globe. People are coming into football into a multimillion pound business and I think football needs to take a harder look at what could be done differently. We are currently exploring the possibility of carrying out due diligence using the outgoing regime to make sure that there is a full and rigorous research being done before the transaction is allowed to go ahead.

AT Do you feel the need to apologise to Rangers fans?

SR I don’t need to apologise because we complied with our articles. I don’t feel there is a need to apologise whatsoever. I think….

AT You need some new articles then don’t you?

SR Well I think the articles

AT Well let’s unpack this. You said there is no need to apologise because we followed the rule books so that’s all right. So you must therefore admit you need a new rule book.

SR No well I think it’s easy at times to try and look around and find a scapegoat and try and point fingers at where blame is to be apportioned. I think perhaps it might be worth looking at the previous regime who for four years when they said they were selling the club, said that they would sell it and act in the best interests of the club. With that in mind I think the previous regime also have to take some responsibility for selling that club and looking after so called shareholders of Rangers football club and those people who that have put money into the club over the years.

AT ??  (Interrupted)

SR the Scottish FA, as I said have a process, that process has been place for some time. It has worked very very well until now I think there are learnings undoubtably and as I said we will review where we can tighten up as I know is happening across the game right now.

The above segment on Craig Whyte and Fit and Proper  Persons is a timely reminder to supporters of all clubs, but particularly of Rangers FC of what happens when those charged with governing Scottish football hide behind the letter of the rules when convenient, rather than apply the true spirit in which those rules were written. It is the approach of The Pharisees to make a wrong , right.

To be fair to the SFA though, I doubt anyone could have imagined the degree of deceit and deception that they had allowed into Scottish football in May 2011 and how useless their rules were as a result, but I am not aware to this day if the SFA have apologised to Scottish football generally and Rangers supporters in particular, not only for failing to protect them from Craig Whyte, but also failing to protect them from the consequences of the foolish financial excesses of Sir David Murray, especially from 2008 when the tax bills in respect of the MMGRT ebts began to arrive at RFC . Some intervention then, assuming something was known by some at the SFA, who also held positions at Rangers, of  those  huge tax demands,  might have cost Rangers three titles from 2009, but what Ranger’s supporter would not give all of that up to protect their club from the fate that the failure of the SFA to govern has caused?

Also to be fair the SFA have changed the rules so that the outgoing regime is responsible for doing due diligence on any new club owners rather than relying on self-certification by the incoming club owner, but we know that did not work particularly well when Rangers Chairman Alistair Johnstone did due diligence on Craig Whyte , but then again Sir David Murray  was under pressure to sell and the guy coming in, everyone was told, had wealth off the radar.

The Nature of EBTS.

AT Let’s look at EBTs. Did nobody question ebts in the Scottish game in the English game come to that simply because nobody thought they were illegal in any way and indeed are not illegal in any way if operated correctly? Is it as simple as that?

SR There is nothing wrong with ebts when used correctly and ebts are a way of providing benefits to employees and if managed in a correct manner are perfectly legitimate. I think that the issue that we know is under investigation at the moment by both HMRC as part of the large tax case and the SPL as part of their own investigation into potential no disclosure of side letters is whether or not there has been any wrong doing and I think the issue at hand is that wrongdoing or potential wrongdoing has been discussed with HMRC for some time for several years in fact so we would not get involved in anything that there is no wrongdoing   taking place and ebts are, as I said, a legitimate way of doing business when used correctly.

Again taking the “givens” into account, particularly the significant event of Sherriff Officers calling to collect unpaid tax in August 2011 and the logical deduction that the SFA President must have known of the difference between the two types of ebts Rangers used, (and perhaps why they were changed) why the insistence at this point that all the ebts used by Rangers had been used correctly? Mr Regan at the time of the interview was either kept in the dark by his President, given he claims to have spoken to no one about the independence of the enquiry, or being economical with the truth.

The whole of Lord Nimmo Smith’s judgement made months after this interview, where Mr Regan stressed again and again there is no wrongdoing in the use of ebts if arranged correctly (or lawfully) is predicated on all ebts with side letters used by Rangers since 23 November 2011 actually being used correctly and in Lord Nimmo Smiths words on being “themselves not irregular”. (Para 5 of Annex 1). It is almost as if Mr Regan knew the outcome before Lord Nimmo Smith.

(In fact the ebt to Tor Andre Flo had a side letter dated 23 November and it related to a tax arrangement that had not been used correctly (using Regan’s own words) The irregular ebt for Ronald De Boer with a side letter of 30 August was placed beyond the scope of the Commission because in spite of it meeting the criteria specified by Harper MacLeod in March 2012 asking to be provided with ALL ebts and side letters and any other related documentation from July 1998 to date (including the HMRC letter of Feb 2011 that fully demonstrated that those particular ebts under  the Rangers Employee Benefit Trust (REBT) were not used correctly) and so were unlawful, NONE  of that documentation was  provided when requested.

This enabled Lord Nimmo Smith to state in para 107 of his Decision “while there is no question of dishonesty, individual or corporate” which is a statement he could not have made had he had all the requested documentation denied to him either by dishonesty or negligence during the preparation of his Commission.

How would he have had to judge one wonders if deception and dishonesty was indeed the factor we now ken that it is?

 

What exactly were the consequences of the failure to provide Lord Nimmo Smith with the required documentation?

It is stated in the Decision (Annex 1 para 104) that the Inquiry proceeded on the basis that the EBT arrangements (by which it meant the MGMRT ebts) were “lawful”. As it transpired the outcome of the FTT decision announced in November 2012 was that the MGMRT ebts indeed were (although this is still under appeal by HMRC.)

However, because Lord Nimmo Smith treated the MGMRT and the Earlier Trust (REBT) as one and the same, (para 35 of Decision) this meant that the Inquiry failed to distinguish between the two trusts and necessarily treated the Earlier Trust as also being lawful (without however having properly investigated its operation). However, the MGMRT and the earlier REBT were two separate trusts and there was no necessary reason to treat them as one and the same. Had evidence relating to the REBT been produced and examined, the Inquiry could hardly have treated them) as “continuous” or allowed Lord Nimmo Smith to say “we are not aware that they were different trusts“(Annex 1 para 35)

From the Decision (Annex 1 para 40), it would appear that the President of the SFA gave evidence only as to his knowledge of the MGMRT (not the REBT). We know now that the President of the SFA had knowledge of the Earlier Trust (sitting on the RFC remuneration policy committee that agreed to their use in 1999 and indeed was active in its setting up). Why the President failed to volunteer such crucial information is surely something he should now be asked?

By the time of the Inquiry, Rangers FC had already conceded liability in what has become known as “the Wee Tax Case” (which related to the now unlawful REBTs). Having regard to the wording at para 104 of the Decision (that is an echo of what Regan stressed to Alex Thomson about ebts) where it is said that to arrange financial affairs in a manner “within the law” is not a breach of the SFA/SPL Rules) the clear implication, must be that to arrange financial affairs in such a way that they are not lawful, must be a breach of the rules.

Given the admission of liability in the Wee Tax Case, payments made in respect of the REBT could not be “lawful” (to employ the language used in the Decision) or disputed, but Mr Regan presumably did not enquire too much into the history of the wee tax case before agreeing to talk to Alex Thomson.

It will be obvious from the above that the unlawful nature of REBTs had been masked from SPL lawyers and Lord Nimmo Smith as a result of:-

(a) the failure by the Administrators of Rangers FC to provide the documentation required of them;

(b) the failure of the President of the SFA to provide to the Inquiry his own knowledge of, involvement in, and presumably as a result of it, an appreciation of the differences between the two types of ebts and the consequences thereof for the investigation.  

Had the REBT been the sole subject of the Inquiry (rather than in effect not being examined at all) the following must have been different:-

(i)            the President could hardly have failed to give testimony of his knowledge and involvement;

(ii)          the Inquiry could not have held that the use of the REBT ebts was lawful;

(iv)       the “no sporting advantage” decision given in respect of the lawful ebts could not have been applied to unlawful ebts.

The real issue in the case of the unlawful ebts was not one of misregistration (Annex 1 para 104) which in turn justified the no sporting advantage decision in paras 105/106 but of paying players by an unlawful means which “constitutes such a fundamental defect (Annex 1 para 88) that the registration of players paid this way (i.e. unlawfully) must be treated as having been invalid from the outset.

Had the true nature of these early ebts been known to SPL lawyers the Terms of Reference of the Investigation would have to have addressed the wrong doing that Mr Regan was so keen to argue with Alex Thomson had not actually occurred (long before Lord Nimmo Smith agreed with him) or had President Ogilvie made the distinction in his testimony, it would have been impossible for Sandy Bryson’s to advise as he did regarding the effect on eligibility. He would have to have been asked questions about two types of ebts not one. Finally Lord Nimmo Smith could not have treated both as continuous.

Finally, given this incidence of non-disclosure by the Rangers Administrators (an identifiable trait of RFC dealings with authority from August 2000 to date), it is impossible to see how paragraph 107 (wherein it is stated that there is “no question of dishonesty”) can be allowed to remain unchallenged.

Of course the failure to supply the key evidence could just be an oversight given Rangers Administrators were hardly likely to have established of their own volition the importance of the documents to the enquiry and yet, had they been supplied, the enquiry could not have been based on the defence Stewart Regan was at such pains to stress in his interview with Alex Thomson at a time only 3 months after Mr Regan and Campbell Ogilvie had joined Craig Whyte for dinner as a result of an invite prompted by questions on the SFA UEFA Licence handling of the wee tax case , created by the very same unlawful ebts.

AT But as the governing body why did you not say to Rangers “look guys this this smells really bad, this looks bad you look (and you have admitted you have not paid your tax) you know we can’t do this, we have got to be open and above board, it looks bad.

SR Well think you need to look at what is legal and above board. At the time the club, were in dispute with HMRC. There was a tax case ongoing the new owner was in discussion with HMRC. In fact he has made comments and the club have made comments to that effect and because the amount was not crystallised under UEFA guidelines, whilst ever it’s in dispute it’s not classed as overdue.

AT Sometimes

SR So you need to separate out the licensing requirement, which is what the Licensing Committee did, from the tax that was owed to HMRC which is as we know what is still ongoing.

Mr Regan was not being accurate here.  The Big Tax case was in dispute and the bill has not crystallised as a result. However the wee tax case crystallised in mid June 2011 and at 30th June 2011, the UEFA licence checkpoint under Article 66 of UEFA FFP, did not meet the conditions to excuse it as being an overdue payable to HMRC. Quite how the SFA handled the processing of the Article 66 submission from RFC is subject to a resolution asking UEFA to investigate put to the Celtic AGM in November 2013 which is still in progress. As has been mentioned twice before Mr Regan has either been kept in the dark or was being less than honest with Alex Thomson. Interestingly Andrew Dickson who has been at Rangers in various administration and executive capacity since 1991 sat on 3 of the four UEFA Licensing Committee meetings during 2011. He may of course have excused himself from any discussions on this matter as the rules allowed, but was a full explanation why he did so, if indeed he did, offered? Would such an explanation have enlightened Mr Regan of what he was dealing with?

AT Sometimes things can be within the rules but from a PR point of view, indeed from a moral point of view, hate to introduce morality to football but can be the wrong thing to do. You would accept that?

SR Well I think that football around the world is going through a difficult time, clubs are in difficult financial circumstances, not just in Scotland, you look down into England and look at the clubs in Administration at the moment. You know Portsmouth and Port Vale in recent times and I think Plymouth is as well again. As far as that is concerned you know that indicates that clubs are living from hand to mouth and there are deals being done all the time with HMRC, payment plans being agreed. There is huge amounts of debt in football.

AT I’m just inviting you to accept that sometimes things can be within the rules but just look bad because morally, they are bad.

ST I think when taxes aren’t paid ehm VAT in particular, National Insurance Contributions of course that’s bad and I think we accept that and we know that in the current regime there is evidence to suggest that Rangers has not paid its taxes since Mr Whyte took over the club. That’s wrong that is against the spirit of the game and certainly we would look to deal with that and stamp out that type of behaviour which is not acting with integrity.

If Carlsberg did irony!

End of Interview.

The Hard Not to Believe Conclusions

There is always the danger in examining anything of finding what you want to be there rather than what is there and it is a danger any writer has to be aware of, but given the responses from Harper MacLeod on TSFM and the total lack of response from the SPFL and SFA when being informed of the missing evidence along with what has been written here it is hard not to conclude that the Lord Nimmo Smith Inquiry was deliberately set up in such a way as to produce two results

  • The minimising of the wrongful behaviour that had taken place from 1999 to 2012 when The Commission sat
  • The avoidance of the consequences of admitting that serious wrongdoing in the form of illegal payments had been made via irregular EBTs, which consequently made the players involved ineligible from the outset, making the Bryson ruling inapplicable in those cases with the consequences of that ineligibility on trophies and remuneration won.

The reader will find it hard not to conclude that either

  • there was a huge screw up by the SPL lawyers charged to set up the Commission which they might be able to defend
  • or
  • Vital knowledge was concealed within the SFA itself in order to achieve the above two results and
  • This knowledge was deliberately concealed because had it not been The Inquiry could not have come to the conclusion it did on player eligibility, not only because unlawful ebts were used in early instances, but also because the deliberate concealment from HMRC of the side letters to De Boer and Flo, the former also kept from Harper and MacLeod, suggests Rangers knew all along and in 2005 in particular that what they were doing since 2000 was morally wrong and against the spirit of the game. It perhaps also explains why HMRC is determined to push an appeal all the way.
  • This failure to supply all documents meant that the line being taken by Mr Regan in March 2012, when the Commission was being set up into the use of ebts and failure to register them with the SFA, came to fulfilment in the Decision of Lord Nimmo Smith himself, achieving the two aims suggested above.

Given that Harper MacLeod have said they passed on to the SFA in September 2014 the evidence kept from them by Rangers Administrators, has Stewart Regan spoken to either Ogilvie or Dickson since then about keeping him in the dark? Or did he know all along?

Of course these hard to believe conclusions could be discounted as delusional ramblings if either the SFA or SPFL were to say they would investigate the evidence kept from Harper MacLeod. It would also help if only one of the thirteen main stream journalists would look at the hard copy of the concealed documents they were provided with, because until someone who values sporting integrity does, the stench of corruption will hang over Scottish football for years to reek out anytime the Lord Nimmo Smith Commission is used as a justification for anything that it contains.

Annex One – Extracts from Lord Nimmo Smith Decision

[5] Although the payments in this case were not themselves irregular and were not in

breach of SPL or SFA Rules, the scale and extent of the proven contraventions of the disclosure rules require a substantial penalty to be imposed;

 

Outline of the Scheme

 

[35] As we have said, a controlling interest in Oldco was held by David Murray through the medium of Murray MHL Limited, part of the Murray Group of companies. Murray Group Management Limited (MGM) provided management services to the companies of the Murray Group. By deed dated 20 April 2001 MGM set up the Murray Group Management Remuneration Trust (the MGMRT). (We note that the MGMRT was preceded by the Rangers Employee Benefit Trust, but we are not aware that they were different trusts. We shall treat them as a continuous trust, which we shall refer to throughout as the MGMRT.)

 

[40] Mr Ogilvie learnt about the existence of the MGMRT in about 2001 or 2002, because a contribution was made for his benefit. He understood that this was non-contractual. Although as a result he knew about the existence of the MGMRT, he did not know any details of it. He subsequently became aware, while he remained director of Oldco, that contributions were being made to the MGMRT in respect of players. He assumed that these were made in respect of the players’ playing football, which was the primary function for which they were employed and remunerated. He had no involvement in the organisation or management of Oldco’s contributions to the MGMRT, whether for players or otherwise. He said:

“I assumed that all contributions to the Trust were being made legally, and that any relevant football regulations were being complied with. I do not recall contributions to the Trust being discussed in any detail, if at all, at Board meetings. In any event, Board meetings had become less and less frequent by my later years at Rangers.”

He also said: “Nothing to do with the contributions being made to the Trust fell within the scope of my remit at Rangers”.

However it should be noted that Mr Ogilvie was a member of the board of directors who approved the statutory accounts of Oldco which disclosed very substantial payments made under the EBT arrangements.

 

[88] In our opinion, this was a correct decision by Mr McKenzie. There is every reason why the rules of the SFA and the SPL relating to registration should be construed and applied consistently with each other. Mr Bryson’s evidence about the position of the SFA in this regard was clear. In our view, the Rules of the SPL, which admit of a construction consistent with those of the SFA, should be given that construction. All parties’ concerned – clubs, players and footballing authorities – should be able to proceed on the faith of an official register. This means that a player’s registration should generally be treated as standing unless and until revoked. There may be extreme cases in which there is such a fundamental defect that the registration of a player must be treated as having been invalid from the outset. But in the kind of situation that we are dealing with here we are satisfied that the registration of the Specified Players with the SPL was valid from the outset, and accordingly that they were eligible to play in official matches. There was therefore no breach of SPL Rule D1.11.

 

[104] As we have already explained, in our view the purpose of the Rules applicable to Issues 1 to 3 is to promote the sporting integrity of the game. These rules are not designed as any form of financial regulation of football, analogous to the UEFA Financial Fair Play Regulations. Thus it is not the purpose of the Rules to regulate how one football club may seek to gain financial and sporting advantage over others. Obviously, a successful club is able to generate more income from gate money, sponsorship, advertising, sale of branded goods and so on, and is consequently able to offer greater financial rewards to its manager and players, in the hope of even more success. Nor is it a breach of SPL or SFA Rules for a club to arrange its affairs – within the law – so as to minimise its tax liabilities. The Tax Tribunal has held (subject to appeal) that Oldco was acting within the law in setting up and operating the EBT scheme. The SPL presented no argument to challenge the decision of the majority of the Tax Tribunal and Mr McKenzie stated expressly that for all purposes of this Commission’s Inquiry and Determination the SPL accepted that decision as it stood, without regard to any possible appeal by HMRC. Accordingly we proceed on the basis that the EBT arrangements were lawful. What we are concerned with is the fact that the side-letters issued to the Specified Players, in the course of the operation of the EBT scheme, were not disclosed to the SPL and the SFA as required by their respective Rules.

[105] It seems appropriate in the first place to consider whether such breach by non-disclosure conferred any competitive advantage on Rangers FC. Given that we have held that Rangers FC did not breach Rule D1.11 by playing ineligible players, it did not secure any direct competitive advantage in that respect. If the breach of the rules by non-disclosure of the side-letters conferred any competitive advantage, that could only have been an indirect one. Although it is clear to us from Mr Odam’s evidence that Oldco’s failure to disclose the side-letters to the SPL and the SFA was at least partly motivated by a wish not to risk prejudicing the tax advantages of the EBT scheme, we are unable to reach the conclusion that this led to any competitive advantage. There was no evidence before us as to whether any other members of the SPL used similar EBT schemes, or the effect of their doing so. Moreover, we have received no evidence from which we could possibly say that Oldco could not or would not have entered into the EBT arrangements with players if it had been required to comply with the requirement to disclose the arrangements as part of the players’ full financial entitlement or as giving rise to payment to players. It is entirely possible that the EBT arrangements could have been disclosed to the SPL and SFA without prejudicing the argument – accepted by the majority of the Tax Tribunal at paragraph 232 of their decision – that such arrangements, resulting in loans made to the players, did not give rise to payments absolutely or unreservedly held for or to the order of the individual players. On that basis, the EBT arrangements could have been disclosed as contractual arrangements giving rise to a facility for the player to receive loans, and there would have been no breach of the disclosure rules.

[106] We therefore proceed on the basis that the breach of the rules relating to disclosure did not give rise to any sporting advantage, direct or indirect. We do not therefore propose to consider those sanctions which are of a sporting nature.

[107] We nevertheless take a serious view of a breach of rules intended to promote sporting integrity. Greater financial transparency serves to prevent financial irregularities. There is insufficient evidence before us to enable us to draw any conclusion as to exactly how the senior management of Oldco came to the conclusion that the EBT arrangements did not require to be disclosed to the SPL or the SFA. In our view, the apparent assumption both that the side-letter arrangements were entirely discretionary, and that they did not form part of any player’s contractual entitlement, was seriously misconceived. Over the years, the EBT payments disclosed in Oldco’s accounts were very substantial; at their height, during the year to 30 June 2006, they amounted to more than £9 million, against £16.7 million being that year’s figure for wages and salaries. There is no evidence that the Board of Directors of Oldco took any steps to obtain proper external legal or accountancy advice to the Board as to the risks inherent in agreeing to pay players through the EBT arrangements without disclosure to the football authorities. The directors of Oldco must bear a heavy responsibility for this. While there is no question of dishonesty, individual or corporate, we nevertheless take the view that the nondisclosure must be regarded as deliberate, in the sense that a decision was taken that the side letters need not be or should not be disclosed. No steps were taken to check, even on a hypothetical basis, the validity of that assumption with the SPL or the SFA. The evidence of Mr Odam (cited at paragraph [43] above) clearly indicates a view amongst the management of Oldco that it might have been detrimental to the desired tax treatment of the payments being made by Oldco to have disclosed the existence of the side-letters to the football authorities.

Auldheid  Feb 2015

About the author

Auldheid author

Celtic fan from Glasgow living mostly in Spain. A contributor to several websites, discussion groups and blogs, and a member of the Resolution 12 Celtic shareholders' group. Committed to sporting integrity, good governance, and the idea that football is interdependent. We all need each other in the game.

5,190 Comments so far

ecobhoyPosted on10:04 pm - Mar 30, 2015


alzipratu says:
March 30, 2015 at 9:37 pm

*****
King is no daftie, but we should remember how he acquired the bulk of his wealth. He’s a spiv just like Whyte, Green, etc. and proven (and convicted) to be just as economical with the truth.
————————————————————–
My take on King is based on exactly the skills employed to acquire his wealth. Many decry that expertise because of his criminal tax evasion but that doesn’t negate his financial abilities.

He obviously IMO has serious moral flaws in his character as evidenced by his criminal convictions for tax evasion and I make no defence of that. But again I look at his long-term battle with SARS. He didn’t roll over easily and I don’t think he will this time either as I don’t believe it’s in his nature.

So I think it wrong to dismiss him as readily as some do. He’s up to something IMO and we have yet to see the plan unfold. At the moment he’s being portrayed as in a corner with events overtaking him.

If that’s what is happening then I will be surprised. I still feel there is a lot to come yet. I haven’t a clue what it is right enuff 😎

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Cluster OnePosted on10:13 pm - Mar 30, 2015


Guidettie had until today to respond. Aprincipal hearing is set for April 9th.
Did Guidettie make a response?

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redetinPosted on10:34 pm - Mar 30, 2015


ecobhoy says:
March 30, 2015 at 9:17 pm

easyJambo says:
March 30, 2015 at 9:11 pm

Ach! O Levels? – you’re just a stripling. Lowers in my day
__________________________________________

O Levels were England; O Grades in Scotland. 😀

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essexbeancounterPosted on10:50 pm - Mar 30, 2015


scapaflow says:
March 30, 2015 at 9:41 pm
essexbeancounter says:
March 30, 2015 at 8:45 pm

That’s an entirely reasonable response.
============================================================
Scapa…are you sure..?.is this really you…(almost) agreeing with me…? 🙂
…Ego te absolvo de omnibus peccatis tuis…especially in the last week of Lent (and I do not mean bank borrowings or lendings 😳

Me bad? 😀

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scapaflowPosted on10:53 pm - Mar 30, 2015


essexbeancounter says:
March 30, 2015 at 10:50 pm

:mrgreen:

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AuldheidPosted on11:43 pm - Mar 30, 2015


I never paid much attention to the SFA Judicial Panel Decision of April 2012 into Craig Whyte and RFC on the charge of bringing the game into disrepute.

I was wondering if they had investigated Craig Whyte’s behaviour over the wee tax case as it’s pretty clear the bill, for which Sherriff Officers called to collect in the previous August 2011, was a pretty disreputable event, especially given that the bill was never paid.

Interestingly the JP Review did look at the non-payment of tax on PAYE and VAT, which happened from September 2011 onwards, but given that Craig Whyte had undertaken to pay the wee tax bill as part of his Takeover agreement, the liability having been conceded in March 2011 by RFC Oldco, I thought the matter would have at least been looked into and either been part of the Review or reasons given why it was not. There was no question of the wee tax case coming under the same disputed category as the Big Tax case, well not if the facts were known that is.

The review in full is on

https://scotslawthoughts.wordpress.com/2012/05/12/the-sfa-judicial-panel-verdict-on-rangers-full-text/

and para 44 states:

“ 44. That shortly after the acquisition, on 3 June 2011 Mr Craig Whyte as Chairman of The Rangers FC Group Limited, in terms of Takeover Panel requirements, issued a letter to shareholders in which he set out a number of intentions which would apply for the period of the next twelve months. These included undertakings to waive Rangers FC debt in the event there was not an insolvency event as a result of “the Big Tax Case”, provide or procure immediate working capital of £5,000,000, and provide immediate player acquisition funds of £5,000,000, with a promise of providing or procuring four more injections of £5,000,000 over each of the succeeding years “

No mention of Craig Whyte’s undertaking on 3 June to meet the wee tax bill – see Part III of document at

https://scotslawthoughts.files.wordpress.com/2012/01/shareholders-circular.pdf

(e) The Rangers FC Group is to contribute to the Club the amount required to meet a liability owed by the Club to HM Revenue & Customs in relation to a discounted option scheme tax;

The JPR Review goes on to say

“It should be noted that the Judicial Panel Protocol Paragraph 11.5.4.11 permits multiple disciplinary charges being brought in respect of a single act or omission.

The six elements alleged were

1 failing to procure the disclosure of his disqualification to the Scottish FA by Mr Craig Whyte.

2 failing to comply with the rules of the PLUS Stock Exchange rules by failing to disclose the disqualification of Mr Craig Whyte.

3 failing to lodge annual accounts by 31 December 2011 in terms of s447 of the Companies Act 2006.

4 failing to hold an annual general meeting by 1 January 2012 interms of s336 of the Companies Act 2012.

5 non payment of PAYE income tax, National Insurance Contributions and Value Added Tax to HMRC.

6 failing to pay due sums to Dunfermline Athletic Football Club by 21 February 2012 in respect of a Scottish Premier League match played on 11 February 2012 pursuant to Rule C.14.5 of the Rules of the Scottish Premier League.

The Tribunal considered the evidence in relation to non payment of the taxes to HMRC by Rangers FC as set out in the complaint. Rangers FC accepted that the obligation fell on Rangers FC to make payment and it had failed to do so. It was an absolute offence to fail to make payment therefore the circumstances in which that failure occurred would have no bearing on liability but might have a bearing on any sanction. In any event the evidence was clear to the Tribunal that Mr Craig Whyte at the relevant time was the “directing mind and will” of Rangers FC and that the principle explained in Tesco brought home liability to Rangers FC. Upon the evidence which it found proved, the Tribunal was satisfied that on the balance of probabilities this element of the charge was proven. “

Of course not handing over PAYE collected or VAT due is an obvious serious tax evading offence but not meeting a £2.8M liability that Craig Whyte had said he would in June 2011 is at the very least worthy of a mention as to why it was excluded from the Review?

When admitting liability for the PAYE/VAT why did none of the RFC staff – Mr John McClelland , former Non Executive Director, Rangers FC, Mr Andrew Dickson, Head of Football Administration (responsible for administration of player ebts at Rangers FC from 2004) , Mr Ken Olverman, Financial Controller, Rangers FC and Mr Martin Bain volunteer that they would like this other instance of substantial tax not paid taken into consideration by the JPR?

Is somebody trying to air brush the wee tax case from history?

Is this 1984?

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causaludendiPosted on2:26 am - Mar 31, 2015


Auldheid, forgive me but the second last, that IS rhetorical, eh…?!

:irony:

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causaludendiPosted on2:53 am - Mar 31, 2015


ecobhoy says:
March 30, 2015 at 4:32 pm
#########################################

Example 8 😆 :irony: 😆

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jimlarkinPosted on7:01 am - Mar 31, 2015


The Tribunal considered the evidence in relation to non payment of the taxes to HMRC by Rangers FC as set out in the complaint. Rangers FC accepted that the obligation fell on Rangers FC to make payment and it had failed to do so. It was an absolute offence to fail to make payment therefore the circumstances in which that failure occurred would have no bearing on liability but might have a bearing on any sanction. In any event the evidence was clear to the Tribunal that Mr Craig Whyte at the relevant time was the “directing mind and will” of Rangers FC and that the principle explained in Tesco brought home liability to Rangers FC. Upon the evidence which it found proved, the Tribunal was satisfied that on the balance of probabilities this element of the charge was proven. “

————————————————-

. . . and as the SFA are allowing them to claim they are the “same” Rangers, then this debt is still outstanding ?????????????

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upthehoopsPosted on7:07 am - Mar 31, 2015


ecobhoy says:
March 30, 2015 at 10:04 pm
================================

I too am sure King is up to something and his criminal convictions do not mean he is stupid either. Not of a great moral standard but that is another argument. Going back to what he is up to he has the perfect smokescreen to do anything he wants. The vast majority of the Scottish media, both print and broadcast want to lay out the red carpet for him. Is there any other area of Scottish life they would welcome a man such as King? If King has access to loads of money, they won’t care or ask where he got it from. They just want the pleasure of seeing Celtic put firmly in their place and they couldn’t give a toss about any other club.

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wottpiPosted on7:54 am - Mar 31, 2015


Dave King may not be stupid.
Dave King may have a plan.
However what we know is that to date he is being stupid by not being open and transparent about his plans, as promised.

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jimmyshandPosted on7:55 am - Mar 31, 2015


Note the three weeks is up…………..will we hear from DL & BL today ?

http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/31817509

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peterjungPosted on8:08 am - Mar 31, 2015


I have seen various recent references to the SFA recognising “Rangers” as the same club in some comments? Have I missed something here – was out of the loop for the last 10 days or so…

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Madbhoy24941Posted on8:20 am - Mar 31, 2015


I do not believe for a second that Dave King does not have a plan; I also do not believe that this plan was devised without covering all angles and in complete agreement with all relevant parties.

Like him or loathe him, he is a smart cookie, of that there is no doubt. I would even hazard a guess that there is more than one plan, contingency measures in the event of ‘those pesky kids’ (A.K.A. Internet Bampots) meddling in affairs.

I also do not believe there are warring parties anymore; I think everyone is now working to the same agenda, as the end-result for Mike Ashley is the same no matter what Goldilocks and The 3 Bears decide.

My only concern about Dave King’s plan, and that of the other members of his group, is that they have considered the whole of Scottish Football for a change and not just their own back yard. If they do, maybe the rest of us will stop looking at them with contempt and welcome their team into the fold.

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Famous songPosted on8:21 am - Mar 31, 2015


Interim results are up. Seems Deloittes did walking away in June last, but nobody could be bothered to say. Some florid prose from Murray (P) that is frankly beyond parody. My bet is that the very fates conspiring against us will enter the Scottish footballing lexicon. Troubles of the last four years are discussed, so he can’t have missed the liquidation, but he goes on to mention a 150th anniversary in seven years’ time. Lots of condescending stuff about “the smaller clubs”, but that’s only what you’d expect. The guy is clearly one bungalow short of a cul de sac: if I were a Sevco supporter, I’d be more worried now than I was last night.

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easyJamboPosted on8:37 am - Mar 31, 2015


Link to results.

http://www.londonstockexchange.com/exchange/news/market-news/market-news-detail/12299859.html

16. Contingent Liabilities

Newcastle Player Loans
During the January 2015 transfer window, the Club loaned five players from Newcastle United. As part of those contracts, should the Club gain promotion in season 2014/15, either directly or via the play-off method, the Club will be liable to pay a total of £500,000 to Newcastle United Football Company Limited.

As this liability is based on an uncertain future event, the Directors have not recognised this amount in these financial statements.

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LUGOSIPosted on9:01 am - Mar 31, 2015


Auldheid

In light of today’s Interim Results we can now delete “(maybe)”
after Kenny McDowall’s name in my post on Sunday night.

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easyJamboPosted on9:02 am - Mar 31, 2015


The underlying state of the accounts is probably a bit worse than the headline figure when you look at the breakdown of their income.

Gate receipts – down £750k
Sponsorship – down £350k
Broadcasting – up £290k
Commercial – down £115k
Retail – down £500k
Other income – up £1.16M

The “Other income” figure reflects the income generated from the rental of the stadium for the Commonwealth games and an International fixture (Georgia?) which together raised £1.3M. That income will not be repeated.

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wottpiPosted on9:11 am - Mar 31, 2015


Looks like both gardeners are still on the payroll.

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easyJamboPosted on9:17 am - Mar 31, 2015


The Cash flow statement shows that the club is still losing a lot of money every month.

The cash position is worse by £1.28M at the end of the period, despite a net £2.844M coming from the share issue and £3M in loans from Ashley (this paid back £1.5M of other loans).

The monthly cash burn is currently around £900K. The £1.5M from the 3 bears will keep the lights on for around 6 weeks.

A footnote to the cash flow statement states:
Included within cash balances is £3.2m (2013: £1.7m) relating to Rangers Retail Limited, which is not immediately available as working capital to the Group as a whole.

I think £1.6M of that was provided as a dividend in Jan 2015 as part of the “two tranche” arrangement with SportsDirect.com

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andygraham.66Posted on9:18 am - Mar 31, 2015


Amended one small part of that report for anyone who likes the horses.

On 10 March 2015, the first day of the Cheltenham festival, John Bennett and Chris Graham were appointed as non-executive directors. James Blair was also appointed as Company Secretary.
On 13 March 2015, the final day of the Cheltenham festival, Chris Graham resigned.

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jockybhoyPosted on9:35 am - Mar 31, 2015


Couple of LOL moments in the initial reports of the interims…

“As this liability is based on an uncertain future event ((promotion)”. An uncertain event? That’s not what we’ve been hearing previously. And isn’t NewGers whole business plan based on “uncertain events” – promotion, league titles, Zadok playing as NewGers roar to glory in the Champions League?

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FisianiPosted on9:40 am - Mar 31, 2015


So the company running Rangers is losing $900,000 a month. Owes Mike Ashley $5,000,000 and owes the 3Bears $1,500,00. Owes Newcastle $500,000 if promoted and thus also probable ratchet clauses raising stadium rental from $278,000 a month to over $300,000 a month 2 Gardeners still on monthly payroll $100,000. $20,000 a month for 5 Crocked players , thats $100,000 a month.
3 more home games plus 2-3 playoff games possibly but no other income. At what point does it start trading whilst insolvent? What are the penalties for directors when this happens? Tell me what figures I have got wrong because if not then Liquidation awaits very soon.

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ecobhoyPosted on9:44 am - Mar 31, 2015


For me one of the most important bits isn’t so much looking at what has happened under the previous Board but what the new Board’s stated intentions are.

And this statement is what intrigues me:

‘Early indications from existing significant shareholders is that there will be positive support for a rights issue in Summer 2015, and that this is the mechanism by which interested parties wish to inject funds into the company.

I confess to not knowing for certain whether a company delisted from AIM can have a Rights Issue but I would tend to think it couldn’t.

Therefore taking the statement at face value – I know, I know – it indicates that the plan at this moment in time isn’t to delist and there’s also mention as to the process for finding a replacement NOMAD continuing.

Obviously they might declare they have been overtaken by events. However I think they might have an argument to AIM for an extension to the 30-day delisting period from loss of a NOMAD.

They can argue they were left in the lurch by the NOMAD resigning and also were ignorant of the Deloitte resignation but are doing their best to get the company back on track.

Will it work? I haven’t a clue but it might.

As to the £500k penalty for promotion – based on 5 players who didn’t have a medical. I certainly don’t think I would be paying that and would be looking forward to a court case to air all of the dirty linen.

It might even give the Home Associations the impetus to ban such mass loans of players by an entity with interests in different clubs.

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bfbpuzzledPosted on9:45 am - Mar 31, 2015


Is there a prize for the most nebulously nonsensical Chairman’s statement? If so how might one make a nomination? OK these things need to be read like Dadaist paintings at the best of times but I have seen one today which is like the kind of thing George Galloway was excoriated for in his address to Saddam Hussain…

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easyJamboPosted on9:46 am - Mar 31, 2015


The play-off games will not earn the club as much as you would expect. The SPFL have a 50% levy on home gates and there is no extra TV money as the play off coverage is factored into the main deals with Sky and BT.

From the SPFL Rules:
C26 A levy of 50% of the monies (gross excluding VAT) received or receivable by the Home Club for all Play-Off Matches played in the Premiership/Championship Play-Off Competition from all admission charges paid and payable to and for the relevant Play-Off Match shall be paid by the Home Club to the Company within seven days of the date on which each Play-Off Match is played.

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jockybhoyPosted on9:55 am - Mar 31, 2015


It should be noted that Murray, P. et al have at least a more realistic expectation for returning to the top of the Scottish game “setting a target of 2022 for when Rangers would be back competing at the top level.”

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mcfcPosted on9:55 am - Mar 31, 2015


On King – is smart good enough?

What King needs is to be smart, experienced and skilled in very specific ways. Remember Pritchett described Rangers as “not a turn around opportunity” for experienced business people – instead a money pit for football fans – and that was before onerous contracts. http://www.forbes.com/sites/sportsmoney/2012/10/08/what-can-we-learn-from-the-financial-meltdown-of-glasgow-rangers-fc/

Look at Ashley’s experience over decades of building businesses, takeovers, rejuvenating brands bought cheap, outwitting larger competitors, patient steps towards goals, ruthless but legal business practices.

Now tell me about King. His Wikipedia page has less than 100 words on his business history – many more on his criminal history.

So I can only judge on what I’ve seen. Many different things said, many contradictions, very little delivery, he seems like a loner, who are his lieutenants – his L&L? Some apparent misleading of shareholders (Nomad) and some apparent denial of facts (F&P). Having done some very basic research, I think most non-blue business people would be reluctant to trust their money and reputation to King. So unless he is prepared to do this alone on his own resources, he’ll have a big hill to climb to enthuse others to help him.

There may be a plan – it may be brilliant – but if so – the camouflage is even better.

“The secret of life is honesty and fair dealing. If you can fake that, you’ve got it made.”, Groucho Marx

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mcfcPosted on9:58 am - Mar 31, 2015


btw – search wikipedia on “David King” and the first two entries are:

David King (Resident Evil), a fictional video game character
David King, character in The Enemy (Higson novel)

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Danish PastryPosted on10:14 am - Mar 31, 2015


Fisiani says:
March 31, 2015 at 9:40 am

So the company running Rangers is losing $900,000 a month. Owes Mike Ashley $5,000,000 and owes the 3Bears $1,500,00. Owes Newcastle $500,000 if promoted and thus also probable ratchet clauses raising stadium rental from $278,000 a month to over $300,000 a month 2 Gardeners still on monthly payroll $100,000. $20,000 a month for 5 Crocked players , thats $100,000 a month.
3 more home games plus 2-3 playoff games possibly but no other income. At what point does it start trading whilst insolvent?
————

Auch, yer awffy cynical! Aren’t there millions of £££ winging their way from South Africa at this very minute? I read that the war was over and that the real Rangers men had won. It was in the paper so it must be true :irony:

PS Is Paul Murray the Barren Knight (Act III, scene 2) about to announce a 120-day review to re-discover what Graham Wallace discovered under the bonnet?

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yourhavingalaughPosted on10:33 am - Mar 31, 2015


Panic and worries over,it has been discovered the black hole under the bonnet is actually the forward facing boot of the wee French model,there is a shinny new engine under the bonnet at the rear,silly us.

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wottpiPosted on10:33 am - Mar 31, 2015


Question

If Haris Vuckic scores the winning goals in play off matches that help secure promotion will the Bears be bothered about owing £500,000 to Newcastle?

Observations

I note Mini Murray makes a number of pleas for fans to get back to buying season tickets.

In the SDM days the mark was around 40k. So an uplift from the current 25k is more than possible.
My guess is a 10k increase is not out of reach is Premiership achieved.
At lets say £350.00 a head- so £3.5m minus the VAT = £2.8m.
Pay off the three Bears and Newcastle = £2m, put money in the bank for the gardeners and that just about sees that income stream out the door again without touching the side.

Ashley is still owed £5m and the squad is needing replenished (and/or win and promotion bonuses kick in for the likes of Black, Templeton etc).
Mini Murray seems to be talking about bringing in high quality backroom professionals – the type that Bill Millar’s man Jon Pritchett said they can’t really afford.
Stadium still falling apart.
Losses still potentially around £1m a month.

Somehow don’t think getting rid of McCulloch’s reputed £72k a month will do the trick.

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yourhavingalaughPosted on10:38 am - Mar 31, 2015


At what point can a club with no credit line or banking facities tap into the next season’s fans S/T monies.

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mcfcPosted on10:39 am - Mar 31, 2015


If this £278K/mth “Ibrox rent” that PMG reports is correct, you’d have thought it was worth a mention in the Chairman’s Review or the Financial Review – if only to deny it. £1,668mil over six months would represent a big chunk of the £2.6mil loss for the period.

King; “Absolute transparency and accountability”

Murray (P); “total transparency, total honesty and total openness.”

http://rangers.g3dhosting.com/regulatory_news_article/476

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bardsPosted on10:43 am - Mar 31, 2015


ecobhoy says:
March 30, 2015 at 9:48 pm

I don’t see how the Board would be liable as the NOMAD did resign and AIM Regulations kicked-in automatically. I’m not sure that there would even be an onus on the Board to try and find another NOMAD.

========================================

Had a double-take when reading that last sentence. My brain, somehow, swapped the ‘o’ for ‘a’ in ‘onus’ and it still made perfect sense given the current board members !

🙂

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valentinesclownPosted on10:53 am - Mar 31, 2015


Can anyone explain why is Mr King involved and why is he desperate to be a director of this loss making club. Why the desperate need to be on the board? Is he really going to finance this club in a big way because someone has to soon.
Do you think that if Paul Murray repeats the word transparency often enough it will come true on it’s own accord. Similar to the company died not the club scenario.
Cannot wait to see how the smsm portray this £2.6 million loss as some kind of a positive. Squirrel alert called for.

From the DR the lie continues. Paul Murray goes on to outline the new board’s “2022 Vision”, which aims to take Rangers “back to the top” within seven years – in time for the club’s 150th anniversary celebrations.

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wottpiPosted on10:57 am - Mar 31, 2015


A bit of openness and transparency required

From today’s interim accounts

“I have been informed by Deloitte, the existing auditor, that they informed the previous Board of their intention to resign following the June 2014 audit.”

Yet as pointed out on the LSE site the AGM in December had a resolution to re-appoint Deloitte

6. “THAT Deloitte LLP be re-appointed as auditors of the Company to hold office until the conclusion of the next Annual General Meeting of the Company before which audited financial statements of the Company are laid.”

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spikeyheidPosted on11:01 am - Mar 31, 2015


Was the resignation of Deloitte not an AIM notifiable event?

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torrejohnbhoy(@johnbhoy1958)Posted on11:03 am - Mar 31, 2015


Morning all.
First post for a few weeks.The wife’s been keeping me busy but I’ve managed to escape for a wee while. :mrgreen:

I just want to ask where the share issue money would appear in the accounts.Income includes 2 one off items(player sales £0.2m & rental income of £1.6m).Without these losses would be considerably higher.Add in the share cash and your looking at circa £7m.
With the boycott,etc,I’d think this figure is closer to the truth.

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jockybhoyPosted on11:05 am - Mar 31, 2015


The accounts pretty much reaffirm what many were saying on here that there is no more fat to be cut (other than Murray Park). If the rampant cost cutting by the previous board/s is to be reversed clearly we have reached the lowest point in the costs column, however, there are still potentially further negative performance in the coming months and years.

If there are people willing to throw money at this financial basket case, fair play to them. I do think you can only go to the well so often – whether that is the fans or the City – before it runs dry…

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wottpiPosted on11:11 am - Mar 31, 2015


I note that as usual Keef at the DR swallows the succulent lamb and reports that Deliotte resigned in June.

The wording in Mini Murray’s statement was of course that there was an INTENTION to resign.

How many of the SMSM will be asking Deloitte to explain their side of the story to find out exactly when they jumped ship?

EDIT
(Mini MUrray also refers to Deliottes as the ‘existing auditor’ – is that not strange if they said they were resigning and were voted through in December)

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bardsPosted on11:29 am - Mar 31, 2015


Murray’s statement in the Daily Radar included this gem;

“We can and we will return this Club to a strong and profitable footing through strategic planning, investment and re-engagement with all of our stakeholders.”

8/10 for BS Mr Chairman, would have been 10/10 if you’d used the buzzwords ‘synergies’ and ‘leverage’.

Is your average Radar reader capable of de-cyphering this sort of business mumbo jumbo ?

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valentinesclownPosted on11:29 am - Mar 31, 2015


Looking briefly at Mr P Murray statement the underlying current (apart from the great, remarkable’ institution that Scottish football needs and benefits from ) is the fans need to invest, really?
Football without fans is nothing.
In Ibrox the feeling is football fans without season tickets or investing then the club is nothing. Would you as fans trust this approach (which is similar to previous boards at this club).

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neepheidPosted on11:50 am - Mar 31, 2015


torrejohnbhoy(@johnbhoy1958) says:
March 31, 2015 at 11:03 am

I just want to ask where the share issue money would appear in the accounts.
==================

Cash raised by issuing shares doesn’t appear anywhere in the profit and loss account, because it isn’t a trading transaction. It obviously affects the cash position, though, and explains how the losses were funded. Since there is still no line of credit with a bank, any trading losses must be funded either by issuing shares, or by borrowing from anyone willing to lend. Ashley has security over everything except Ibrox for his £5m, the Three Bears have no security for their £1.5m. So where does the next lot of money come from? I don’t think they can sell STs before the promotion issue is decided, but maybe I’m wrong on that. Anyway, the £1.5m won’t last beyond the April payday, so at least another million will needed to get through May.

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tykebhoyPosted on11:54 am - Mar 31, 2015


A couple of questions.

The interims have not been audited they have been reviewed by an Independent Financial Reporting Accountants.

Now I don’t think there is a requirement for interims in the normal business world to be audited but isn’t this a requirement of SPFL and/or SFA licensing for next season?

Secondly is there a suspicion that Deloittes have done most of the footwork on this and Jeffreys Henry LLP have only reviewed that work? At best they could only have started 3 weeks ago yesterday and thats an awful short time for them to come to their conclusions. Of course they may have had several staff burning the midnight oil and completed a thorough review. I wonder how much that would have cost RIFC?

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ecobhoyPosted on12:20 pm - Mar 31, 2015


neepheid says:
March 31, 2015 at 11:50 am

So where does the next lot of money come from? I don’t think they can sell STs before the promotion issue is decided, but maybe I’m wrong on that. Anyway, the £1.5m won’t last beyond the April payday, so at least another million will needed to get through May.
—————————————————-
It can only come from soft loans from other RRM IMO – IIRC there is some kind of nodding reference to that in today’s statement.

It may well be the case that if DK gets a favourbale CoS decision and passes – as I confidently predict – the SFA F&PP test that he will turn over some of his family loot to save the day and the club.

However I have no doubt that whoever is making these ‘donations’ will be ‘repaid’ in shares either in RIFC Plc or a private limited company. Possibly even TRFCL.

I’m not sure there is an actual bar to selling STs – they probably just need to build-in a mechanism that if promotion is gained that STs bought on credit have later payments automatically increased to cover the difference.

There is the issue of course that credit card facilities are via SD afaik and it would seem sensible IMO to change that if possible.

To those not buying on credit then I’m sure there would be some kind of ‘honesty box’ operation. It also strikes me that ST prices will need to be hiked quite a bit although that’s always a fine judgement wrt how it effects takeup.

For this to have any chance of working a lot of Bears are going to have to dig deep and contribute heavily to save their club. Whether it’ll be enough is very problematic although it’s possible.

But only if the fan expectations can be held in check – if that fails then so will the club IMO.

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AuldheidPosted on12:20 pm - Mar 31, 2015


On the loan of five players with expressed aim of helping to win promotion for which the lending club makes makes a good return, is this actually fair on the other clubs wanting promotion?

If you are a “big” club and the cost to you of being promoted is 5x the weekly wage plus a 500k payout that is only paid if you can afford it from future earnings from that promotion, how is that allowable under fair play? I appreciate the rules allow it but I’m talking principles here.

Is it right not to pay the full cost of those players weekly wage (ie include the bonus)that is actually unaffordable in order to move to affordability?

If you don’t have a credit line to borrow money to buy players because of past financial foolishness, is this the way around the principle of affordability which underpins financial fair play that Scottish football seems reluctant to embrace.

If all other clubs are living by an affordability principle how is it fair that one club is able to find ways of not observing that principle going back 15 years and still operates by avoiding it?

There is just something not right or fair about such an arrangement.

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vascodaparsPosted on12:21 pm - Mar 31, 2015


Jeffreys Henry’s review wasn’t that thorough. The chairman says that retail income suffered from the closure of the Glasgow airport shop and it has been open every week that I’ve flown out of Glasgow.

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scapaflowPosted on12:23 pm - Mar 31, 2015


“Rangers and the task of setting the Club back on the correct path were too important but I must say I never imagined I would become Chairman of one of our country’s great institutions.”

Maybe taking the Kremlin Watching statement parsing a bit far, but wasn’t Murray billed as the interim chairman, pending resolution of King’s regulatory difficulties?

The King over the Water doesn’t even get a mention, never mind a toast :mrgreen:

Deloittes handing in their notice is another piece of bad joss, the storm clouds appear to be darkening.

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ecobhoyPosted on12:25 pm - Mar 31, 2015


jockybhoy says:
March 31, 2015 at 11:05 am

The accounts pretty much reaffirm what many were saying on here that there is no more fat to be cut (other than Murray Park).
—————————————————–
Murray Park is a luxury that will require to go and at the right time I’m sure it will but it would be impolitic to announce that currently.

I also think most of the fat has been trimmed except in the first team wages where there is a lot that could be done and has to be done.

But we are back to balancing this with fans expectation. It’s a tricky one to get right and getting it wrong could spell financial disaster.

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andygraham.66Posted on12:28 pm - Mar 31, 2015


http://www.jeffreyshenry.com/jeffreys-henry-llp-scores-rangers-football-club-valuation-role

involved at IPO time according to Grant Russell…………

Jeffreys Henry also the registered address of five companies of which former Rangers finance director Brian Stockbridge is involved with.

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scapaflowPosted on12:30 pm - Mar 31, 2015


ecobhoy says:
March 31, 2015 at 12:25 pm

“But we are back to balancing this with fans expectation. It’s a tricky one to get right and getting it wrong could spell financial disaster.”

Napoleon’s most important maxim was:

“Ask anything of me, but time”

If it ever applied anywhere, it applies here, surely?

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AuldheidPosted on12:33 pm - Mar 31, 2015


Tykebhoy

At present TRFC have an Entry level licence under 8.11 of National Club Licensing.

Clubs in the PL require the Gold or Silver standard that requires a more stringent audit.

I’ll need to look at 8.11, 8.12 and 8.13 which covers insolvency events but the Licensing Committee can still use their discretion and set conditions for approving a licence.

This is where the SFA could grow a set and start imposing affordability via licensing conditions on a club whose attitude seems to be we cannot afford to operate under an affordability principle,it stops us winning things.

The minute we see an affordable business plan for TRFC that does not depend on non football income is when we know our game is on the level.

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finchleyflyerPosted on12:33 pm - Mar 31, 2015


I remain staggered by how much is spent by that organisation. £16m for six months! I thought the players’ wages were now c£6m pa? So that’s £13m spent on other stuff in six months? What? How? Where? It can’t all be on onerous contracts! The facilities are all falling apart, so it’s not as if it’s being spent on those. If Murray is really about transparency, perhaps he should explain, line by line, what exactly costs £13m ever 6 months at Ibrox.

And, as has been pointed out above, after stripping out the Commonwealth Games money and the Charlie Telfer fee, the operating loss actually increased by £697k compared with the prior year comparative!

What is the SFA going to do about this basket case of a company/club, which admits there is a serious going concern issue?

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BawsmanPosted on12:34 pm - Mar 31, 2015


Auldheid says:
March 31, 2015 at 12:20 pm
==================================

What I find difficult to fathom is the silence from the Championship contenders at the Mike Ashley induced skewing of all rules and regulations.
Even if they are only using ONE of the five, this guy has gained them enough points on his own to effect the leagues outcome.
We are all aware of the complete lack of integrity, governance, management or moral fibre at the SFA but surely the fans of Hibs, Falkirk and Queens should be shouting the odds on this cheating?

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SmugasPosted on12:37 pm - Mar 31, 2015


Auldheid,

Whilst I agree with you on principle, is it not the same argument re the compensation/golden parachute rules for relegation which I assume still exist? Yes it softens the fall for the club going down, yes it is accepted they have higher cost base as, for instance, they may be full time looking at part time as an option but equally it means said club is artificially supported in a financial sense in the lower league to compete to reattain its higher league position.

A balancing act to be sure.

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bluPosted on12:37 pm - Mar 31, 2015


scapaflow says:
March 31, 2015 at 12:23 pm
“Rangers and the task of setting the Club back on the correct path were too important but I must say I never imagined I would become Chairman of one of our country’s great institutions.”

Maybe taking the Kremlin Watching statement parsing a bit far, but wasn’t Murray billed as the interim chairman, pending resolution of King’s regulatory difficulties?

scapa, to be fair the very next line in the Chairman’s statement after the one you quote is;

I may be in the Chair only in the interim..

This at least hints at King acting as a shadow director.

Together with his advance publication of the outcome of the result of the motions to the EGM, which may have had an impact on share price, there have to be even more questions as to the man’s suitability to be a director of a listed company. It’s no surprise that the previous NOMAD departed and there’s no sign of a replacement.

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mcfcPosted on12:41 pm - Mar 31, 2015


BDO, HMRC and CoS are you paying attention?

Mr Paul Murray, Chairman (interim), Rangers International Football Club PLC, 31 March 2015, Interim Results, RNS Number: 9220I:

• “Club’s 150th anniversary and the 50th anniversary of Barcelona”

• “as our 150th year approaches”

• “Only 13 men have held the position of Rangers Manager”

• ”regain our traditional standing in Scotland’s top flight as well as re-entering the European arenas.”

http://rangers.g3dhosting.com/regulatory_news_article/476

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scapaflowPosted on12:41 pm - Mar 31, 2015


blu says:
March 31, 2015 at 12:37 pm

jings I missed that! Old age doesn’t come alone, but in its battalions :mrgreen:

Edit

Still an equivocal statement, something has shifted IMO

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tearsofjoyPosted on12:56 pm - Mar 31, 2015


ecobhoy says:

March 31, 2015 at 12:20 pm

neepheid says:
March 31, 2015 at 11:50 am

So where does the next lot of money come from? I don’t think they can sell STs before the promotion issue is decided, but maybe I’m wrong on that.
*******************************
A Championship (England) club I have a keen interest in is currently selling STs for next season at a handsome discount (for existing ST holders)….. provided you pay by Direct Debit or purchase on line. This club is currently challenging for a play off spot and so , like Sevco, is not certain what division they’ll be playing in.

Perhaps it’s the thought of asking fans to cough up hard earned , physical cash that’s an issue.

On a separate note. If a club were to go into Administration having sold briefs for the following season , where would that leave the ticket holders? Stiffed ?

So, nothn

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mcfcPosted on1:02 pm - Mar 31, 2015


Do AIM have rules about PLC’s pretending to be other companies (including liquidated ones) ?

Mr Paul Murray, Chairman (interim), Rangers International Football Club PLC, 31 March 2015, Interim Results, RNS Number: 9220I:

• “as our 150th year approaches”

AND

“Rangers International Football Club plc is a football club based in Glasgow, Scotland.”
http://www.rangersinternationalfootballclub.com/shareholder-centre/business-overview

AND

“This is the website for Rangers International Football Club plc, the holding company of The Rangers Football Club. ”
http://www.rangersinternationalfootballclub.com/

Surely some clarity required – maybe their Nomad can advise them:
Nominated Adviser – WH Ireland Limited, 24 Martin Lane, London EC4R 0DR
http://www.rangersinternationalfootballclub.com/shareholder-centre/advisers

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mcfcPosted on1:08 pm - Mar 31, 2015


Bawsman says:
March 31, 2015 at 12:34 pm

. . . but surely the fans of Hibs, Falkirk and Queens should be shouting the odds on this cheating?

========================================================

These guys need to forget about the SFA and organize themselves a full page advert – maybe in Geneva (Nyon) or Zurich. There are people with experience who I’m sure would help them.

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ecobhoyPosted on1:19 pm - Mar 31, 2015


Auldheid says:
March 31, 2015 at 12:20 pm

There is just something not right or fair about such an arrangement.
————————————————————-
I totally agree and it’s a major part of the reason why I fear Ashley’s possible football ‘Master Plan’ much more than the alternative, more than faintly ludicrous, very long march to their Rightful Place – wherever or whatever that might be 🙄

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mcfcPosted on1:29 pm - Mar 31, 2015


Dear Diedre

I think my new Nomad is stringing me along – shows very little commitment and I’m afraid might dump me before a very important date coming up in my life. This has happened before and I see all the same signs. What should I do for the best?

Dear Broxetta

The sensible and brave thing to do is take control and dump your Nomad before they can dump you. You may fear getting a reputation as being a bit toxic amongst Nomads, but that is better than being embarrassed on your big day. In the longer term maybe seek some counselling on your decision making regarding your choice of partners.

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John ClarkPosted on1:44 pm - Mar 31, 2015


mcfc@1.02 pm
” …….as our 150th year approaches
________________
Lies and deceit were a way of life for SDM and the RFC of his day.
The same attitude has been in the black hearts and minds of the founders of the now 3 years old club, and in the sundry petty criminals and sleaze-balls who have had their iniquitous, grubby part in perpetuating the Big Lie, the Lie made possible by the master liars- the men who fashioned the 5way agreement.
These last are clearly men not fit to be regarded with anything other than the contempt we feel for for cheats in general, but on an infinitely larget scale because,being trusted to administer our sport with integrity, they spat in our faces .
hey were in a position of trust.
They abused that trust and continue to offend us by maintaining a fiction.
Bad as a rotten club owner may be, rotten Sports administrators ( even the best administrator in the world) are the very pits.
May they severally and individually suffer justly for their deceitful, lying behaviour.

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magicroundaboutPosted on1:48 pm - Mar 31, 2015


With regard to season tickets and knowing what league you are in. I believe Hibs sold theirs last season way before their status failed to be consolidated in the top division.

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mcfcPosted on1:49 pm - Mar 31, 2015


“Interim” seems to be le mot du jour down Edminston Boulevard.

Interim Chairman

Interim Manager

Interim Results

Interim Solvency

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ecobhoyPosted on1:54 pm - Mar 31, 2015


scapaflow says:
March 31, 2015 at 12:30 pm
ecobhoy says:
March 31, 2015 at 12:25 pm

“But we are back to balancing this with fans expectation. It’s a tricky one to get right and getting it wrong could spell financial disaster.”
————————————————————
Napoleon’s most important maxim was: “Ask anything of me, but time”

If it ever applied anywhere, it applies here, surely?
———————————————————-
I actually don’t think ‘time’ is the most important issue here but rather ‘Where’s the money coming from and how much?’.

That has been the major question IMO since DK and T3B and others weighed-in to buy shares following the Sarver appearance.

There is still no clear answer to the question. However if the new Board are confident they have the money on-tap when required then ‘time’ ceases to be an issue.

I obviously don’t know if the money is there or not and I doubt if anyone outside the inner cadre knows the full answer to that one.

However we have seen apparently sensible and well-respected Rangers-supporting businessmen recently buy shares and provide interest-free loans without security and apparently others will follow. I haven’t included DK btw.

So either these businessmen have developed a severe case of Rangeritis and have decided to burn money or they have bought into a plan. For their sake I hope they have carried out the necessary due diligence.

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mcfcPosted on2:06 pm - Mar 31, 2015


ecobhoy says:
March 31, 2015 at 1:54 pm

So either these businessmen have developed a severe case of Rangeritis and have decided to burn money or they have bought into a plan. For their sake I hope they have carried out the necessary due diligence.

===========================================================================

Let’s remember that DK and T3B were given the bum’s rush into buying shares by Sarver’s sudden appearance to challenge their declared £6.5mil plan. I think this was probably a ruse to disrupt them (by Ashley ??) and so they are still in re-grouping mode. The £1.5mil unsecured loan is buying time. The next pay day will illuminate who is still buying time and whether King is real about his 50/50 investment. If their plan is so well funded and supported, why does it look like it is on a knife edge? Why has the new regime not even named the sources of the £6.5m after winning the EGM – let alone the rest of the £20mil, £30mil, £50mil that will be needed for a seven year plan. IMO there is LESS to this than meets the eye.

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Gym TrainerPosted on2:09 pm - Mar 31, 2015


All this so-called analysis here – what we need is a really well-respected guy with an impeccable proven track record with regard to Scottish football finance to summarise it all for us. Someone like Neil Patey I think would fit the bill perfectly… :mrgreen: 😆 :mrgreen: 😆 :mrgreen:

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nawlitePosted on2:11 pm - Mar 31, 2015


ecobhoy says:
March 31, 2015 at 9:44 am

I confess to not knowing for certain whether a company delisted from AIM can have a Rights Issue but I would tend to think it couldn’t.
—————————————————————
Delisting doesn’t affect the ability to offer a rights issue, Eco, and won’t make it particularly more difficult to do so given that Rights issues are only offered to existing shareholders. It has been pointed out on here before, however that the difficulty will be in obtaining the 75% shareholder approval to proceed with a Rights issue – we don’t know how all shareholders will view the possibility of dilution.

I think thatyet again Paul Murray is being a bit clever with his wording here too – “positive support for a rights issue in Summer 2015, and that this is the mechanism by which interested parties wish to inject funds into the company.” He isn’t wrong in what he says, but I think he has deliberately worded it in such a way that it can be easily interpreted by people who don’t know how a Rights Issue works as meaning new investors looking to inject funds. This gives more confidence to TRFC* fans that King was being honest (!) and does indeed have investors lined up, as he has already said.

Re your comments about the £500k clause re the loan players, should they help TRFC* gain promotion, I’m not sure it’s as clear cut a case of ‘syphoning money’ as you suggest. I imagine it’s not unusual for such clauses to be inserted in loan agreements where the ‘big’ club (in this case, that’s NUFC, not TRFC*!)continues to pay the bulk of the salaries (as we are led to believe). Most clubs continuing to fund the success of other clubs would want recompense for funding that success, no?

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ecobhoyPosted on2:12 pm - Mar 31, 2015


magicroundabout says:
March 31, 2015 at 1:48 pm

With regard to season tickets and knowing what league you are in. I believe Hibs sold theirs last season way before their status failed to be consolidated in the top division.
—————————————————-
The ST argument for me isn’t one any real football supporter would blink an eye at.

When a club is facing extinction then a fan either financially supports it to the hilt to try and save it or they walk away and the decision on the route to follow often depends on whether the fans trust those in charge.

Most don’t give blindly IMO but make a conscious decision and if it’s to support their club they know fine well that every penny they give might go down the stank anyway.

Rangers fans are not alone in this attitude – indeed I would say it was probably the norm. The bulk of them lost faith in the previous Board and they decided to change it.

It’s their decision and they had every right to make it and spend their money how they please.

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scapaflowPosted on2:18 pm - Mar 31, 2015


ecobhoy says:
March 31, 2015 at 1:54 pm

I get where you are coming from, but, these guys had months to prepare for the EGM. There is & was no excuse for them not walking into the blue room, with a solid plan, with financing in place, ready to be executed. They didn’t, and all the indications are they still don’t.

The NOMAD issue was public in Feb, King’s regulatory problems would have been apparent 30 seconds into a discussion with a corporate lawyer. Any CA can read a balance sheet and a profit & loss account, then, there is the inside info they would have been undoubtedly fed, they may not have known all the hideous details, but the scale of the problems would have been a known known.

There is simply no excuse for not being a month into executing their plan, instead of being in the position of having burnt a month’s worth of time to little effect.

To repeat, there is no sign of a plan, or the hard readies to fund one, so time, I submit, is very much the issue.

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wottpiPosted on2:27 pm - Mar 31, 2015


ecobhoy says:
March 31, 2015 at 2:12 pm
magicroundabout says:
March 31, 2015 at 1:48 pm

Hibs launched their season tickets on 9th March.

They have their own issues with the board/finance/ownership etc but are just looking to build on this seasons support (ave 10k – high 15k) and get the fans through the turnstiles regardless of where they are playing next year.

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mcfcPosted on2:30 pm - Mar 31, 2015


nawlite says:
March 31, 2015 at 2:11 pm

ecobhoy says:
March 31, 2015 at 9:44 am

I confess to not knowing for certain whether a company delisted from AIM can have a Rights Issue but I would tend to think it couldn’t.

=========================================================================

What de-listing cuts off is the possibility of selling new shares to the public, private investors and institutional investors who are not already shareholders – because RIFC would no longer be a publicly lists company (plc).

RIFC can sell new shares to existing shareholders in proportion to their existing shareholding. Any shares not bought by existing shareholders can be bought by other existing shareholders – conditions apply.

RIFC can only sell new shares to selected existing shareholders (excluding other existing shareholders) after a 75% vote by existing shareholders to “dis-apply exemption rights”, That is, a 75% vote to relax the “must offer new shares to all shareholders in proportion rule.”

In practice, de-listing means RIFC can’t sell new shares to fans and private investors who are not already/still shareholders. It’s reasonable to guess that institutional investors are unlikely to invest again in RIFC – so no loss there. The 75% vote is a separate matter – not influenced by de-listing.

btw Any new shares dilute the holding in the company, and so the voting balance, if an existing shareholder (eg Ashley) does not pay for their allocation of new shares to maintain their percentage of the business.

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