Fan ownership, why won't it work?

Discussion in 'Coventry City General Chat' started by skybluetony176, Mar 15, 2017.

  1. skybluetony176

    skybluetony176 Well-Known Member

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    Wycombe, L2, 11th, 52 points
    Exeter City, L2, 7th, 57 points
    Portsmouth, L2, 3rd, 65 points

    AFC Wimbledon, L1, 12th, 50 points

    When you consider demographic, history and potential you could only really say that Portsmouth are misplaced and not only did they have a big rebuilding job to do in every area including getting the ground safe so it could be fully opened (a big investment that initially took funds away from the team) they also look set to pass us on the way up while we are on the way down.

    So how will fan ownership not work for us?

    Why are sections of our fan base abrasive to it?

    How is it not a better alternative to disappearing into oblivion under a hedge fund ownership model?

    Surely it must now have dawned on us all that is the only possible outcome of continued hedge fund ownership?

    As Nick inadvertently pointed out in the is this where MR is getting investment from thread the only investment that is coming into the club is that made by the fan base so why do we need a hedge fund?

    Fan ownership wouldn't change the basics of the business model but it would change the approach meaning that the club would be run by people who have a vested interest in making sure that the club is run in the best interest of the club.

    I'm not suggesting that it will be a bed of roses and/or guarantee success and promotions, that would be naive. What I would suggest is that in the all too clear unavailable sugar daddy/massive corporation saviour we don't have it is realistically our best and only chance to save the club from oblivion.
     
  2. Warwickshire lad

    Warwickshire lad Active Member

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    Under fan ownership we will spend the rest of our days in the bottom 2 divisions.
     
  3. Kingokings204

    Kingokings204 Well-Known Member

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    As apposed to non league football within 4 years?
     
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  4. Nick

    Nick Administrator

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    There has been no actual clear plan or anything for fan ownership other than articles about it in the Telegraph.

    Once there is an actual clear plan people would then maybe get behind it.
     
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  5. Broken Hearted Sky Blue

    Broken Hearted Sky Blue Well-Known Member

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    So a better prospect than remaining with Sisu then.
     
  6. skybluetony176

    skybluetony176 Well-Known Member

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    I'd take that. That would clearly be better than what Hedge fund ownership offers us.
     
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  7. pastythegreat

    pastythegreat Well-Known Member

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    I'm not against a fan takeover completely, but as it stands we have so many groups and divisions and arguments between fans with no clear direction it is already (in my eyes) doomed for failure!
    The only group that could realistically lead such a takeover would be the trust and they've managed to alienate 50% of the fans they'd hope to get behind them IF this were to be successful.
    Think this has more legs/possibility of working than the phoenix club idea but still not convinced (as of yet). But would love to be proven wrong, I love the taste of my own hat!

    Sent from my SM-G928F using Tapatalk
     
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  8. Grendel

    Grendel Well-Known Member

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    If we acknowledge the ownership model is no better what's the point of it.

    Fan ownership is a misleading title anyway. The fans will not own anything in terms of strategic input. There will I assume be a financial commitment in terms of share capital.

    The club would require a head of business with wealth to run the club anyway.

    It's a term that means nothing really.
     
  9. skybluetony176

    skybluetony176 Well-Known Member

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    If you'd payed attention to the open meeting rather than try to promote it as a meeting to organise a season ticket boycott you would have learned that the Portsmouth didn't have a clear plan of how they'd take ownership of the club either but still managed it. The reason for that is that they didn't know under what circumstances they would be buying the club until it happened. What they did do is a lot of planning behind the scenes in an attempt to be prepared for all eventualities but they had no clear plan until they knew what they were planning for. The £450k (IIRC) that they raised happened very quickly, because it had to be that way, they didn't have it sat in the bank waiting for an owner to name their price or an administrator to except their bid.

    Until SISU are willing to genuinely state a realistic price or the club goes into administration there is no clear plan because there is no clear set of circumstances.
     
  10. Grendel

    Grendel Well-Known Member

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    Didn't Portsmouth get great help and support from the local council?
     
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  11. Nick

    Nick Administrator

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    I did pay attention, have a read through the thread with plenty of live comments.

    Our situation is nothing like Portsmouth, there is no administrator.

    Fan ownership would mean starting from scratch pretty much with infrastructure.
     
  12. skybluebeduff

    skybluebeduff Well-Known Member

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    What's happening under SISU? Are you oblivious to it?
     
  13. skybluetony176

    skybluetony176 Well-Known Member

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    I thought you were a successful businessman? Surely you understand that application is as important if not more than than the basic model.
    Are you suggesting that the club is currently being run in the clubs best interests like would clearly happen in a fan ownership model? Both models would be run on a breakeven model but they'd be starting from a completely different place. Just like Portsmouth who are about to pass us on the way up as were on the way down.
     
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  14. skybluebeduff

    skybluebeduff Well-Known Member

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    We are starting from scratch next season aren't we? The only thing we do have next season is an agreement for one more year at The Ricoh, we don't even know where we'll train our players. And that's if those shareholders supply us with the loan we allegedly need.
     
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  15. hill83

    hill83 Well-Known Member

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    I don't like the idea of it personally. But can I be removed from this fan base 'section' please?
     
  16. skybluetony176

    skybluetony176 Well-Known Member

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    As did Portsmouth. They had to get the ground up to standard so it could be fully reopened, they've managed to reacquire some of the land assets that went missing from the club in various takeovers and administrations and did that while steadying the team and then building on it.

    They've rebuilt more than just a promotion chasing team. Like I said, you should have paid attention rather than nurture your perverse agenda that it's everyone else's fault. It was all in the presentation that Ashley Brown from The Pompey Trust and supporters direct did. If you'd paid attention.
     
  17. fernandopartridge

    fernandopartridge Well-Known Member

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    I like the idea of it but feel it isn't based on any realism whatsoever. If fan ownership occurred this summer, what do the leaders of the idea foresee as their key immediate objective?
     
  18. skybluebeduff

    skybluebeduff Well-Known Member

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    It's not attractive or wealthy for the club, but the choice of SISU or that, is a no brainer.
     
  19. ceetee

    ceetee Active Member

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    Fan ownership would have to be run on a break-even model.
    The essential differnce between that and SISU would be that the "owners" would be supportive of running a succesful football club, rather than a non-loss business.
    It might be the best model for saving the club and the right thing to do in the short term, but it is not the model for ambition beyond Div3 and 4 as I see it.
    However we have to stop the rot before we can improve so I wouldn't oppose it in the short term.
     
  20. Nick

    Nick Administrator

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    I was paying attention, I saw how they said the trust shouldn't be near protests and they should remain professional. Nothing to do with agenda really, I just pointed out what happened.
     
  21. hill83

    hill83 Well-Known Member

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    If it was purely setup for the short term with an eye on investment/new owners I'd be ok with it.
    The Cov fan in me just knows we'll still be in the shit and would have nobody else to blame if fan owned. There's enough fighting between us as it is.
     
  22. skybluebeduff

    skybluebeduff Well-Known Member

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    The advantage of fan ownership would be if ever any potential buyer wanted to buy the club out, they'd be negotiating with people who won't be putting a price tag on it that's unrealistic and damn right pathetic like SISU are.
     
  23. Nick

    Nick Administrator

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    I know, that's what I mean which is why I said about a plan.

    I wouldn't be against crowd funding a training complex that's protected so it's only ever CCFC. Whack a sports bar in there, little kitchen to have "evening with" type dinners etc, family days, kids parties and then training days. Something like you see at Copsewood / Woodlands Power League but obviously a bit better. If a plan / idea like that came out people would be behind it!

    That's what I meant by plan, if SISU said tomorrow "here you go, here's the ccfc name" then what would happen. If then loads of ideas / plans on how the training ground situation would be dealt with etc etc then people can get behind it.
     
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2017
  24. Astute

    Astute Well-Known Member

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    Fan ownership won't work as SISU won't sell to us.
     
  25. torchomatic

    torchomatic Well-Known Member

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    I don't think that is true. If someone - The Trust - organised a business model with proof of funds then I think they would listen.
     
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  26. oldskyblue58

    oldskyblue58 CCFC Finance Director

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    The immediate prospect of fans ownership is slim, SISU are not for selling. I think people get hung up on "fans ownership" thinking that it means entirely owned by the fans, given the potential fan base at CCFC then it is much more likely to be a joint ownership

    As for things like the Academy and training ground or stadium agreement then these will need to be sorted out long before the club is sold by SISU. It would then be a question of honouring or renegotiating what is already there.

    Would fans be involved in day to day running of the club most unlikely, even more unlikely if there are co investors. Would the fans pick the team no
     
  27. Liquid Gold

    Liquid Gold Well-Known Member

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    To put it as simply as possibly it won't work for us because we have very few sources of income compared to other teams. Without someone willing to pump money in we're destined to remain in lower league football in perpetuity. Without starting a who is to blame for what game the council selling the Ricoh to wasps will mean any sort of competent ownership mode involving fans is impossible.
     
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  28. Astute

    Astute Well-Known Member

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    1, How much would you value our club at?

    2, How much do you think that we could raise?

    3, How much would SISU want to sell?

    If all 3 are close there would be a chance. But they would be miles apart. And then you have the problem of putting it all together. We could end up worse off than we are now.
     
  29. riyadhskyblue

    riyadhskyblue Well-Known Member

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    We are not aware of anything that Sisu plan because they plan precisely nothing, but we can take it as a certainty that they will not be selling the club whilst they are carrying the 42 million debt and nobody is going to pay anything like that for a club with zero assets.
    I would like to see a fan ownership model in place, even if we continued to slide, whilst the infrastructure of the club was rebuilt, but in reality I would be very surprised if the owners did anything other than keep this horrible debilitating status quo in place as we go down down deeper and down.
     
  30. Grendel

    Grendel Well-Known Member

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    The club isn't being run on a break even model but on a cash flow neutral basis - that's it's priority.
     
  31. skybluetony176

    skybluetony176 Well-Known Member

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    Proof of funds for what amount? How are they supposed to provide proof of funds when they don't know how much money they need to raise to be able to provide proof of funds?

    There's nothing stopping SISU discussing the basics with the trust including an amount to be agreed, it could all be done within a confidentiality agreement so no discussion other than the amount required will come out once an agreement is made in principle and proof of funds is required to continue.

    Proof of funds at this stage is a deliberate unnecessary barrier being put up. Remember from the Higgs court case that no proof of funds were shown during negotiations. Proof of funds were only asked for once SISU came back with their "charitable" offer. A lack of proof of funds in the early stages of negotiations is not unusual or necessary. SISU understand how the trust intend to raise the capital and therefore understand how futile asking for proof of fund's is before even sitting down and discussing the prospect in the first place.
     
  32. chiefdave

    chiefdave Well-Known Member

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    Portsmouth are no longer majority fan owned. Having been unable to get out of L2 they needed extra investment which diluted their shareholding below 50%

    AFC Wimbledon is a one off situation that should never happen again.

    That just leaves Wycombe and Exeter, while both are to be applauded neither could be classed as an unqualified success.
    Wycombe have nearly dropped out of the league on more than one occasion and Exeter had further financial issues and needed a loan from the PFA to stay in business.
    This was pointed out by the Pompey chap at the Trust meeting but totally ignored.
    Completely agree with this. I know you can't have every little detail but there should be a vague idea of what will happen. Where will the money come from, what would happen about the academy, where would we play. All things that can be addressed at this point.

    We've been told the Trust have been quiet because they have spent the last two years working on this yet at the Trust meeting there was zero information. It was essentially a presentation on what Pompey did which is nothing like the situation we have now or are likely to have in the future.
    But they did have a plan, as you go on to say they planned for all possible scenarios and this was discussed regularly with their members. They started work in Sep 09, they didn't go into admin until the start of 12 and were in admin for over a year!
    7 figure loan from the council who also changed planning restrictions to allow them to sell their car park to Tesco. They also had a very sympathetic administrator and the FL stating they would not issue the golden share to anyone but the Trust.

    Fan ownership is a great concept but it needs huge changes to the game in this country for it to become a viable way forward. At the moment its just a way of treading water waiting for a better option.
     
  33. chiefdave

    chiefdave Well-Known Member

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    Lets say you set shares at £1K. You ask people to put down a no commitment deposit of £100 that is held in escrow by an independent third party. That then illustrates to the seller that you are serious and can raise an amount that they deem acceptable to sell for.
     
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  34. pastythegreat

    pastythegreat Well-Known Member

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    Source of income surely would go down to fans buying tickets? If say it was put to fans, in return for £600 say, you receive your ST and x amount of shares, plus a vote in manager choices, player sales, board members etc etc.
    IF 25,000 took up on that you have made £15m in ticket sales alone, then your advertising, shirt sales etc etc. £600 for a season ticket is a lot of money, but for a stake in YOUR club. You could sell dearer and cheaper packages depending on what an individual can afford and what they want in return.

    Sent from my SM-G928F using Tapatalk
     
  35. oldskyblue58

    oldskyblue58 CCFC Finance Director

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    This proof of funds demand that keeps being put forward. It isn't really how fans ownership bid works

    It is usually that a club becomes available and the fans group is given the opportunity and time to see if they can raise funds to meet part or all of the sale price. So to sit down and talk about the possibility of a buy out is it necessary to prove funds at day one? -no. Although such a demand for proof is an effective barrier.This of course points to when fans buy outs often happen, just before the end game, which is why fans groups get given time to raise funds once they are accepted as potential purchasers - they are often seen as the last resort to save the club.

    It really is not like a normal commercial deal and should not be viewed as such. Does it have to be when a club is terminally distressed - no. Is administration or potential liquidation a requirement of fans ownership - no. Will its structure, demands, etc be down to solely the fans group - no not if co investors are involved

    Can a detailed plan be put forward to fans or even the sellers? no because no one other than the seller knows the true financial state of a club and that knowledge dictates, price and working capital requirement and therefore the amount needed to be raised. Can a broad indication of of the steps required be put forward yes.

    At the end of all this then the fans group must be prepared to walk away if the price demanded is unrealistic or the due diligence shows it is unworkable, or can not agree final terms with the seller or co investors, or it is in the best interests of the club to do so. It cannot be gain ownership at any cost
     
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2017
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