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I agree with all of this. We just need to be sure we're thinking long term as well as short and don't leave ourselves open to loss of control 10 years down the line.

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On Jay's advice I contacted Tom Feely about the proposed share sale and he responsed very quickly within a few hours. Tom confirmed that the Society has a 74% share holding and that a share sale of 50,000 shares would reduce that to about 57%, which is still a controlling stake. To be honest though we may not sell anywhere near 50,000 shares.

 

A 75% share holding entitles the holder to force through certain matters irrespective of the views of the minority shareholders (the Romanov situation at Tynecastle). the Society has no intention of increasing its shareholding, as it would be of no benefit and I agree with that.

 

My view is that the sale of say 25,000 shares would allow more ordinary fans to have a stake in the club they love but still allow the Society the retain a safe majority of the shares.

 

Hope that clarifies the situation.

 

Credit due to Tom for providing a quick and helpful response.

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I'd had an idea for the 'well society.

 

May not be worthwhile due to the admin, but...

 

Could folk donate/loan unused season tickets to the society, for example if they can't make it next Saturday, they could give the 'well society that ticket to re-sell or "give away" for a donation?

 

There are probably loads of free kids tickets that folk took just because they could that are seldom or never used. These could be loaned to the society and given out for a suggested £5 (which becomes £10) donation.

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Sorry to say I'm going to be pretty critical on this.

 

When I joined the WS I was unemployed and scraped the £300 together as there was a deadline given with a "if we don't make it over the threshold the dream is dead". I put money in I couldn't afford when I had little spare. I bought into the idea of the club being run by the support and sustainably (* I want to emphasise that word) going forward and a slush fund provided by the WS that would be dipped into when required and topped back up when the sun was shining.

 

In the years since I've witness a degree of amateurism, missed opportunity and languid deadlines. I've seen the structure and direction of the WS change, the dynamic alter without one significant vote and a board who's re-election seems a fait accomplit. One thing is clear, it has not been transparent or representative of ALL those who have contributed. Despite recent efforts by some in particular who have done their best after recognising some glaring issues.

 

We now have a subscription model where the funds collected don't contribute to a fund but are merely an extra revenue stream for the club no different to an advertising hoarding, programme advert, shirt sponsor or TV money. Consequently a season ticket holder who also contributes £10 a month via DD now is faces an outlay of £420 a year. OK in 2.5 years time they will attain steel membership and all that goes with that, but other than being altruistic what else do they get?

 

The particular issue I have is what I mentioned above, that of sustainability. I want the club to live within it's means so therefore revenues are greater than outlays. The £70-120k from the WS per year now are bundled in with all the other revenues and I have an issue with that as it seems skewed.

 

Going after the same people who attend week after week for more money when there are plenty of others who have drifted from attending or never considered Fir Park as an option. These people should be targeted and by avoiding doing so is lazy and does nothing to spread the burden or onus.

 

Now in later September with 100 odd days of the year remaining, a share offer is made. I could already gain a share for £10 by attending the Chapman and parting with some cash but I get that it will be doubled if done via the WS. But is this too little, too late? It seems a pretty simple solution so why wasn't it launched soon after Les' announcement in March/April? Is it truly innovative? What distinguishes this/us from a traditionally owned club? Is this being done because it is late September and there is not much else on the table? What exactly are the WS as club owners doing differently from before?

 

It was sold as supporter focused but now if I buy a season ticket and contribute a DD as they'd like it costs me significantly more to attend FP per season. If a rich benefactor came in and suggested that they would like 1,000 adults to increase their season ticket contribution by 40% they'd be mass boycotts. As we're under the illusion of buying in then its OK and palatable? Nah .... not for me.

 

I was considering contributing £4,700 this year to top up to Amber as times are now good financially and it would be doubled to near enough nine and a half grand but not any longer. Sorry to say but #notapennymore

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We've spoken about the Well Society at great length on here and in person, so I won't go too deep into a reply - a lot of what you've mentioned are the exact same issues I've had with the Society over the years, and continue to do so, and we both had similar experiences at first in terms of paying £300 we each couldn't afford.

 

The reasons behind the Share Sale proposal are there in the statement for those who want to check - primarily taking advantage of the Double Your Money offer, while also building up the reserves that should have been there from the start. Additionally, any questions or comments are welcome to be sent to Tom or Douglas (e-mails above) - as mentioned earlier, responses will be fired out pretty quickly.

 

One point I would make is that I'm not sure where the £70k figure is coming from? The Society puts over £100k into the club annually. It doesn't necessarily make much difference to your post, but worth pointing out that it's a fairly crucial six digit sum.

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Like the idea and I'll be investing a little. I never stumped up the initial 300 as I didn't particularly buy into the idea or implementation for the 'normal' fan at the time. However I've been a monthly investor since that was an option and think this is a good next step.

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Jay or anyone else from the society thats lurking, one of these months I'll make that surgery!

 

in the meantime I'll not dwell on concerns around other soceity business regarding allocation of memberships funds,

 

but need to state one thing, the society selling club shares, which are the societies only financial assets, if it does go ahead ,

 

should only be selling these shares to society members.

 

imho.

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Jay do you know how many members voted and what percentage of the total membership that was?

 

I don't have the exact figures to hand, but I believe it was around 10-15% of the total adult membership. Although in the context of "turnout" that might seem a little low, the whole idea behind the new initiative to conduct polls on a more frequent basis is to give a snapshot into the opinions of the membership when the Society Board are making a decision, rather than balloting every member in a binding vote (like the Sevco ballot), and we hope to hold more polls on issues in the future. We had originally thought that there may only be a few dozen members who would take part in this original poll, so we're very pleased with the number who did and the overwhelming support for the proposal has obviously been taken on board.

 

In other news, the bucket collection before the Aberdeen cup tie has raised £1,255.05: http://www.thewellsociety.co.uk/2017/09/29/quarter-final-bucket-collection-total/

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We've spoken about the Well Society at great length on here and in person, so I won't go too deep into a reply - a lot of what you've mentioned are the exact same issues I've had with the Society over the years, and continue to do so, and we both had similar experiences at first in terms of paying £300 we each couldn't afford.

 

The reasons behind the Share Sale proposal are there in the statement for those who want to check - primarily taking advantage of the Double Your Money offer, while also building up the reserves that should have been there from the start. Additionally, any questions or comments are welcome to be sent to Tom or Douglas (e-mails above) - as mentioned earlier, responses will be fired out pretty quickly.

 

One point I would make is that I'm not sure where the £70k figure is coming from? The Society puts over £100k into the club annually. It doesn't necessarily make much difference to your post, but worth pointing out that it's a fairly crucial six digit sum.

 

The 70k figure has been banded about with countless other over the years from the WS so I start to lose track. Sustained common message delivered concisely and all that.

 

However I don't think this was the aim of your post but the fact it is 6 figure for me is even more worrying. All this says is that the club can bumble along not having work as hard to find an extra £100k+ per year to operate because the WS members will shore it up. I thought the club was meant to be sustainable, this isn't a unending moneytree as many will cease their DD's when they reach a membership threshold.

 

At least under the old system, the WS actually had something tangible to show for the digging deep of its membership in terms of capital reserves.

 

To repeat the point of the post I made before. The main issue I have with it and always have with our club is those who already are committed and contribute are pumped for more and more rather than attracting those who have lapsed, fallen by the wayside or never considered attending FP.

 

It was sold as a .... we live in a area blighted by economic hardships, people here don't have a lot of spare cash kicking about. Therefore when a fans group take over the ownership of the club, have we seen anything to mitigate that burden, to try something truly revolutionary and innovative rather than the tired old status quo? I sincerely seen the WS and fan ownership as an opportunity to do things different from the stoic and tired way football clubs are managed in the past. I seen it as a way to get a fresh look at things, implement innovative ideas, engage with parts of the support who had lapsed and those who had yet to associate with the club. However I look and see a distinct lack of dynamism, lack of any innovative ideas and lack of focus on the priorities despite the valiant efforts of too few.

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However I don't think this was the aim of your post but the fact it is 6 figure for me is even more worrying. All this says is that the club can bumble along not having work as hard to find an extra £100k+ per year to operate because the WS members will shore it up. I thought the club was meant to be sustainable, this isn't a unending moneytree as many will cease their DD's when they reach a membership threshold.

 

At least under the old system, the WS actually had something tangible to show for the digging deep of its membership in terms of capital reserves.

 

To repeat the point of the post I made before. The main issue I have with it and always have with our club is those who already are committed and contribute are pumped for more and more rather than attracting those who have lapsed, fallen by the wayside or never considered attending FP.

 

It was sold as a .... we live in a area blighted by economic hardships, people here don't have a lot of spare cash kicking about. Therefore when a fans group take over the ownership of the club, have we seen anything to mitigate that burden, to try something truly revolutionary and innovative rather than the tired old status quo? I sincerely seen the WS and fan ownership as an opportunity to do things different from the stoic and tired way football clubs are managed in the past. I seen it as a way to get a fresh look at things, implement truly revolutionary ideas, engage with parts of the support who had lapsed and those who had yet to associate with the club. However I look and see a distinct lack of dynamism, lack of any innovative ideas and lack of focus on the priorities despite the valiant efforts of too few.

At some point in the hopefully not too distant future our outstanding debts to Les Hutchison and John Boyle will be paid off. So, I suppose that is the Society's main priority at the moment. Thereafter those who can afford to do so and wish to can continue to join the Society; pay up their instalments; or start / continue to make monthly donations. Jim McMahon has already said as much. This ongoing revenue stream will continue to help the club. I have no problem with this as long as folk are not forced, against their will, to contribute - this won't happen. Each to their own. Those who wish to continue paying will and those who don't won't.

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At some point in the hopefully not too distant future our outstanding debts to Les Hutchison and John Boyle will be paid off. So, I suppose that is the Society's main priority at the moment. Thereafter those who can afford to do so and wish to can continue to join the Society; pay up their instalments; or start / continue to make monthly donations. Jim McMahon has already said as much. This ongoing revenue stream will continue to help the club. I have no problem with this as long as folk are not forced, against their will, to contribute - this won't happen. Each to their own. Those who wish to continue paying will and those who don't won't.

 

Absolutely. The Well Society has thankfully ditched the tired scare-mongering of the "you NEED to join us or an army of South American drug-lords are going to take over the club" patter previously - there's no attempts to force anybody to join. The current priority is to pay off Les & John while trying to encourage as many new members as possible, something that is ongoing. Am I completely happy with the Well Society? Absolutely not, but there's certainly a bit more positivity about the whole thing at present, going by the feedback and response from 'Well fans.

 

In terms of the model itself, there's never been any suggestion that the club is unsustainable without the six digit sum from the Society. The club is now budgeting sensibly and operating within its own means, as was the plan all along. As a result of operating within its means, the club would probably skirt with relegation on a fairly regular basis. I'd be very surprised if any 'Well fans were genuinely shocked by that given the size of our club. Where the Society's contribution is important is bridging the gap between that and having higher ambitions. The Well Society's contribution doesn't keep the club afloat, it pays for things like Cedric Kipre's contract extension, the ability to bring Liam Grimshaw and Peter Hartley to the club, and having a new deal on the table for Moult - things that may not have been possible without the monthly pledges from Society members. If you take the Society money away, the club would still be sustainable - it just may be sustainable outwith the top flight in the next few years, again something I don't think is a massive surprise to anybody.

 

For me personally, I would be far more likely to contribute to the Well Society knowing that I'd be constantly seeing the benefit of my input on the park, in the way of a better playing squad that we may have had originally, than I would paying into the Society knowing my cash was just going into a secret stash somewhere for a seemingly inevitable crisis. That's a personal view and others may disagree and, as kmcalpin says, they are more than welcome not to be a part of the Society as a result. I have close friends who I go to the games with every week who aren't members, it's a personal choice I'm more than happy to respect.

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Absolutely. The Well Society has thankfully ditched the tired scare-mongering of the "you NEED to join us or an army of South American drug-lords are going to take over the club" patter previously - there's no attempts to force anybody to join. The current priority is to pay off Les & John while trying to encourage as many new members as possible, something that is ongoing. Am I completely happy with the Well Society? Absolutely not, but there's certainly a bit more positivity about the whole thing at present, going by the feedback and response from 'Well fans.

 

In terms of the model itself, there's never been any suggestion that the club is unsustainable without the six digit sum from the Society. The club is now budgeting sensibly and operating within its own means, as was the plan all along. As a result of operating within its means, the club would probably skirt with relegation on a fairly regular basis. I'd be very surprised if any 'Well fans were genuinely shocked by that given the size of our club. Where the Society's contribution is important is bridging the gap between that and having higher ambitions. The Well Society's contribution doesn't keep the club afloat, it pays for things like Cedric Kipre's contract extension, the ability to bring Liam Grimshaw and Peter Hartley to the club, and having a new deal on the table for Moult - things that may not have been possible without the monthly pledges from Society members. If you take the Society money away, the club would still be sustainable - it just may be sustainable outwith the top flight in the next few years, again something I don't think is a massive surprise to anybody.

 

For me personally, I would be far more likely to contribute to the Well Society knowing that I'd be constantly seeing the benefit of my input on the park, in the way of a better playing squad that we may have had originally, than I would paying into the Society knowing my cash was just going into a secret stash somewhere for a seemingly inevitable crisis. That's a personal view and others may disagree and, as kmcalpin says, they are more than welcome not to be a part of the Society as a result. I have close friends who I go to the games with every week who aren't members, it's a personal choice I'm more than happy to respect.

 

You cite the decent players in our squad, but to be fair you should also mention that it could equally be used to pay for Clay or Lucas' wages and in its most tenuous and indirect, for Jacob Blyth to afford to get to Ibiza.

 

Maybe I'm in the minority but I don't see what is a commercial entity as a charity at the same time. If any other business wants us to contribute more then we generally want something for it.

 

I'd just rather the six figure sum was raised by the club by existing commercial means, wither it is increased sponsorship, advertising, hospitality or punters taking seats. By your argument the WS contribution makes us competitive, the fear of relegation hanging over us regularly is diminished but it would be a factor without this injection.

 

My argument is this revenue stream is mitigated with the addition of 250-300 new adults to FP a season and a few extra bit of advertising here and there. That for me is truly sustainable but for some reason is something we seem unwilling to go for.

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Things have changed since the original conception of the WS...for me, I think, for the better. Having a spare pot of money while still owing money always seemed a bit silly to me so when Les moved the goalposts and essentially pushed us into early ownership it, for me, made the WS a better idea. All entities want the same thing at the end of the day. A well run club with no debt.

 

Your on board or not I guess at this current point in time. Which is fine.

 

Once we pay back the debt to everyone I think then we can potentially have a rethink with directly what happens with the WS income stream. If for a few years that effectively means we can pay off a bit more debt by offsetting the loss to the squad (i.e we pay off debt but can still get that extra player due to the WAS) then all good.

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Maybe I'm in the minority but I don't see what is a commercial entity as a charity at the same time. If any other business wants us to contribute more then we generally want something for it.

 

I'd just rather the six figure sum was raised by the club by existing commercial means, wither it is increased sponsorship, advertising, hospitality or punters taking seats. By your argument the WS contribution makes us competitive, the fear of relegation hanging over us regularly is diminished but it would be a factor without this injection.

 

My argument is this revenue stream is mitigated with the addition of 250-300 new adults to FP a season and a few extra bit of advertising here and there. That for me is truly sustainable but for some reason is something we seem unwilling to go for.

It doesn't matter if you're in the minority or not you're entitled to your view. I think we'd all rather that the club was self sustaining from commercial sources and, as far as I know, its the intention of our directors and the Society to make it so. Every effort should be made to increase revenue streams whilst minimsing unnecessary costs. However, football clubs are strange entities and for most part they're not out and out businesses in that many of the their "customers" are fans and yes they take advantage of that. If some fans want to contribute to the club ie through the Society, why would we turn them away and refuse their money?

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It's an interesting debate and I find myself agreeing with some aspects of both arguments.

 

On the one hand, we are all enjoying watching better performances on the pitch with players of the quality we all want to see wearing Claret and Amber. Given the overall financial situation, this would not be possible without using the monthly income from the Society, albeit this goes against the original concept under which the society was established. As long as the good performances continue it looks like good value for money. If results go the other way, is it good value then?

 

With regard to establishing a Reserve Fund for unforeseen circumstances, I think this is essential and the sooner the better. One of the biggest drains on resources in the past few years has been upgrading the pitch to one that is fit for purpose. Fortunately that situation has been resolved but Fir Park is an old stadium. What if another unforeseen costly repair is required in the near future? How would that be funded without access to a Reserve Fund? We are told the monies raised by the proposed Share Sale are to be placed in such a fund and for the reason stated I think this is essential and should be a condition of the sale.

 

Should we keep asking the same group of people to keep on contributing more and more? I too would like to see a more concerted effort being made to attract new investors, but if existing members are prepared to contribute more then that is a decision for them to make. But eventually that well will run dry. One question I do have is this. If monthly income increased to £200k or £300k (very unlikely I know) would all of those funds be immediately invested in the team and day to day expenses? Surely at some stage the Society has to say " We are keeping some for a rainy day. You as a football Club will need to operate within your own resources".

 

I also see lots of comment about repaying Les. I also look forward to when this is the case, but let's do it on the basis of the terms agreed.......Transfer Income, Double Your Money Deal and eventually the balance on a Repayment Schedule after the original 3 year Interest Free period as passed. I would hope MFC see the repayment of Les and John Boyle as their responsibility and not that of the Society. Only if the Club cannot generate sufficient income to meet any scheduled repayment should the proposed Society Reserve Fund be turned to. I have a fear that the Share Sale proceeds will be used to repay Les "early" leaving us high and dry in any emergency situation. Other than MFC being in a default situation, I do not want to see members' monies being used to repay Les.

 

I suppose I am trying to think long term, rather than just short term coupled with an excellent performance on the field. All about balance..... in my opinion of course

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I don't see any rush being made to pay off Boyle and Les early. From a business perspective, it would be pretty stupid to not make use of an interest free line of credit for as long as it's available. Everybody seems quite happy with the current arrangement.

 

I imagine, like most members, I'll be keeping an eye on the books every year and assessing if my contribution is still being well spent and/or needed. I certainly have no problem contributing in my current situation as I rarely get to pay gate money and a season ticket is fairly pointless.

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Worth pointing out that, although I don't necessarily agree with all the points made in here, I do try and relay the majority of views and criticisms from this thread to the Society Board so all debates, disagreements and criticism is welcome!

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I accept that paying off debt makes sense but money going straight into the clubs finances may be well spent but is ultimately lost. A reserve fund that can be dipped into when needed then paid back can be used time and again. That was the idea that I bought into.

 

There are many reasons why people may stop contributing in the future, change of circumstances, run of poor form by the club, feeling that they have done enough. If all the money is spent then they have nothing to show for it other than perhaps a few years of 'punching above our weight'.

 

Perhaps the Society money could be split, 50% to drive forward the club, 50% to build up the fund. I don't know what size that fund needs to be £250k? We could achieve that over the next five years based on the figures mentioned.

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A lot to cover, so lets get to it ....

 

Things have changed since the original conception of the WS...for me, I think, for the better. Having a spare pot of money while still owing money always seemed a bit silly to me so when Les moved the goalposts and essentially pushed us into early ownership it, for me, made the WS a better idea. All entities want the same thing at the end of the day. A well run club with no debt.

Your on board or not I guess at this current point in time. Which is fine.

Once we pay back the debt to everyone I think then we can potentially have a rethink with directly what happens with the WS income stream. If for a few years that effectively means we can pay off a bit more debt by offsetting the loss to the squad (i.e we pay off debt but can still get that extra player due to the WAS) then all good.

 

As Superward pointed out, the club wanted to reach a threshold of 300k from memory for JB to release his initial stake. The reasoning was to make sure the fans via the WS were serious and had credibility. It was suggested at the time a SPFL club needed a backup fund of around 500k to cover most eventualities including relegation. This would allow us to hopefully only spend one season in the league below before bouncing back without losing any personnel or infrastructure.

 

There was a transfer of funds during that time back and forth plus a shareholding was secured for a sum of money (the amount escapes me). With the transfer to Les and then his plan (which turned out to be curtailed) the goalposts did change.

 

Like ropy I bought into one plan, it then changed to another without a vote. That was quite a dramatic change in direction and one certainly worthy of full membership debate than an executive implementation.

 

I also see lots of comment about repaying Les. I also look forward to when this is the case, but let's do it on the basis of the terms agreed.......Transfer Income, Double Your Money Deal and eventually the balance on a Repayment Schedule after the original 3 year Interest Free period as passed. I would hope MFC see the repayment of Les and John Boyle as their responsibility and not that of the Society. Only if the Club cannot generate sufficient income to meet any scheduled repayment should the proposed Society Reserve Fund be turned to. I have a fear that the Share Sale proceeds will be used to repay Les "early" leaving us high and dry in any emergency situation. Other than MFC being in a default situation, I do not want to see members' monies being used to repay Les.

 

Personally I don't have an issue with that WS money being used to go directly to Les. One owner (Les) wants a certain amount of cash to transfer his ownership to a buyer (the WS). A collection of 2,000 committed fans should not be seen in terms of the purchase as any different to a single lottery winner or a successful business person. I think the repayment via the club model was proposed because it was seen that would be the quickest way by Les to recover his outlay. Relying on 300 quid here and there or a drip feed of DD's as illustrated by Jay brings in a 6 figure sum starting with a 1. It looks like Marvin's sale will bring in the best part of 500k, cup semi 250k, etc. It would take the WS 7ish years to accumulate that.

 

In terms of the model itself, there's never been any suggestion that the club is unsustainable without the six digit sum from the Society. The club is now budgeting sensibly and operating within its own means, as was the plan all along. As a result of operating within its means, the club would probably skirt with relegation on a fairly regular basis. I'd be very surprised if any 'Well fans were genuinely shocked by that given the size of our club. Where the Society's contribution is important is bridging the gap between that and having higher ambitions. The Well Society's contribution doesn't keep the club afloat, it pays for things like Cedric Kipre's contract extension, the ability to bring Liam Grimshaw and Peter Hartley to the club, and having a new deal on the table for Moult - things that may not have been possible without the monthly pledges from Society members. If you take the Society money away, the club would still be sustainable - it just may be sustainable outwith the top flight in the next few years, again something I don't think is a massive surprise to anybody.

 

For me personally, I would be far more likely to contribute to the Well Society knowing that I'd be constantly seeing the benefit of my input on the park, in the way of a better playing squad that we may have had originally, than I would paying into the Society knowing my cash was just going into a secret stash somewhere for a seemingly inevitable crisis. That's a personal view and others may disagree and, as kmcalpin says, they are more than welcome not to be a part of the Society as a result. I have close friends who I go to the games with every week who aren't members, it's a personal choice I'm more than happy to respect.

 

As a board member you appear to suggest that all revenues (minus running costs) collected over the course of a year go directly to the club to finance player salaries. I suppose Big Roy does that at Ross County but he is his own boss and unanswerable to anyone. Personally I am in fundamental disagreement with this as how the WS now functions.

 

If it's a convoluted way of accounting that the club pays Les £150k then the WS put £150k into the club, then I get that some elements of our support may be more content as they feel their cash is being used on talent rather than paying off the previous owner (which we actually do have an obligation to do).

 

I'd be much happier if the WS (as owner) said to the club, "If the 6 figure sum we contributed is the gap between skirting with relegation and higher ambitions, then to ensure continued sustainability (that being defined as SPFL status), when that sum equates to 300 adult season tickets or a specific commercial deal(s), then please go out and secure this as a matter of priority"

 

I accept that paying off debt makes sense but money going straight into the clubs finances may be well spent but is ultimately lost. A reserve fund that can be dipped into when needed then paid back can be used time and again. That was the idea that I bought into.

There are many reasons why people may stop contributing in the future, change of circumstances, run of poor form by the club, feeling that they have done enough. If all the money is spent then they have nothing to show for it other than perhaps a few years of 'punching above our weight'.

Perhaps the Society money could be split, 50% to drive forward the club, 50% to build up the fund. I don't know what size that fund needs to be £250k? We could achieve that over the next five years based on the figures mentioned.

 

This for me makes things sink home. While I love the club and will and have given it a lot of my time and effort beyond merely watching I also recognise it sells a 1.5 hr entertainment experience for £19. If I spend a further £2, I can get a pie and no longer hungry. If I'm inclined to go to the shop I buy a replica top and I'm a further £45 down but I have an item of clothing. If I want a better seat then I pay £4 more. Other than attaining a lapel pin or the knowledge you are contributing what exactly do we get for regularly contributing to the WS? A £10 DD per month results in a £5 per game hike.

 

To those who say a better product on the park, well what we witnessed over the past seasons was as much down to poor scouting and acquisitions as much as the money in the pot to secure them. This year we appear to have something good building but all it takes are a few lemons or a couple of long term injuries. Money doesn't insure anything Leicester City success over the bottomless pockets of Man City and Chelsea and at the other end of the spectrum Hibs up here a few years back prove that. I accept that a bigger player budget mitigates the chances but is by no means a guarantee.

 

I agree if you continually set up to exist with such a fine margin then it wouldn't take much to dip below that target of 10th and above. I also get that success often breeds success (and extra revenues) plus speculating to accumulate.

 

I also see lots of comment about repaying Les. I also look forward to when this is the case, but let's do it on the basis of the terms agreed.......Transfer Income, Double Your Money Deal and eventually the balance on a Repayment Schedule after the original 3 year Interest Free period as passed. I would hope MFC see the repayment of Les and John Boyle as their responsibility and not that of the Society. Only if the Club cannot generate sufficient income to meet any scheduled repayment should the proposed Society Reserve Fund be turned to. I have a fear that the Share Sale proceeds will be used to repay Les "early" leaving us high and dry in any emergency situation. Other than MFC being in a default situation, I do not want to see members' monies being used to repay Les.

 

Personally I don't have an issue with that WS money being used to go directly to Les. One owner (Les) wants a certain amount of cash to transfer his ownership to a buyer (the WS). A collection of 2,000 committed fans should not be seen in terms of the purchase as any different to a single lottery winner or a successful business person. I think the repayment via the club model was proposed because it was seen that would be the quickest way by Les to recover his outlay. Relying on 300 quid here and there or a drip feed of DD's as illustrated by Jay brings in a 6 figure sum starting with a 1. It looks like Marvin's sale will bring in the best part of 500k, cup semi 250k, etc. It would take the WS 7ish years to accumulate that.

 

I suppose I want to see the WS use its revenues and influence to lead the way in Scotland and deliver initiatives centred round the support. I want to see it influence the club to significantly increase attendances and make attending easier on the pocket and supporter-centric. We have a product staged 18/19 times a year and 8,000 spare seats on average. It costs us the same amount to put on the show regardless, so every extra backside on a seat has to be considered a bonus.

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Good post G&F

 

I reckon the path we are on with the WS and Club just now is fine short term. We're focussed on the debt pay off while also at the same time the WS is putting money into the club which ultimately directly/indirectly should benefit the squad. It's also, I would argue, fairly risk averse and that's sensible with our debt level and no guarantees on transfers etc.

 

Strategically, medium to longer term I think we should be looking at exactly what you describe in your last paragraph G&F. There's an argument we don't need to wait but I think with level of change over the past few years on and off the park at the club, the turnover of the WS board and lack of permanent available resource to really drive the change through properly I wouldn't be comfortable pulling the trigger on anything which changes things dramatically. That's not to say we can't start talking about it at the WS in a working group format with a view to a longer term implementation.

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G&F in principle I agree with most of what you say but at the moment - as everyone is well aware- we are trying to pay off the debt so in my view the £100,000+ put into the club yearly over the last couple of years has been to cover any shortfall arising from this.

Once this is completed I will be looking to see all or most of any transfer income going straight to the club avoiding the need for the society to contribute as much which will then allow the society to start building a proper fund.

It is my view that what is happening with the money raised through the society being used to help us stay in the top flight is a short term option as I'm sure that if we weren't paying off Les & John then the money raised by transfers the last two seasons would be enough to meet that objective.

There will be years when we get no transfer funds and at this point then the society should step up to cover the shortfall but on the whole I believe the club and society are moving in the right direction.

I also like your idea of dropping the price to encourage more fans along but believe this can only be done once we have sufficient funds to cover any possible shortfall if the idea fails.

Finally I would also like to think that if we can reach the league cup final then the added income should partly be used to decrease the money that the society puts in this season.

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Any further news about the proposed share sale?

 

I can see the idea of MFC shares being considered as a Christmas present for some Well fans and if we want to take advantage of the "double your money offer" then we are running out of time

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