In May the “opposition” to Malcolm Murray as chairman of Rangers requisitioned an EGM. The purpose of this was to appoint James Easdale and Chris Morgan and to remove Malcolm Murray and Phil Cartmell.
Rangers acknowledged this to the Stock Exchange on 16th May and in early June announced that the shareholders who had requisitioned the meeting were in consultation with “the company” (Rangers Intergalactic Football Club PLC) and the timetable had been delayed in the hope of resolution.
Walter Smith was then appointed to take over as chairman from Malcolm Murray, who stepped down as chairman but who remained a board member.
Things seemed to have gone very quiet. The time for the EGM had passed, which was in order as long as the requisitioning shareholders agreed.
However Chris Musson of the Sun (who has been a regular breaker of stories about Rangers) had a story on Friday which looks as if it brings the EGM issue right back to the top of the agenda. This time it might prove more difficult to sidetrack it.
You can read it in full here. The headline is “Green demands Gers showdown”.
The piece states, in part:-
Green has lodged a legal letter saying ex-chairman Malcolm Murray — described by insiders as his “nemesis” — must be axed as a director. He also wants Murray’s ally Phil Cartmell ditched — and for bus tycoon James Easdale to finally join the board after months of wrangling.
Sources close to Green claim he’s even considering returning to run the club in a day-to-day role if changes aren’t made.
His demands came in a formal request for an emergency general meeting of shareholders, which the club was examining yesterday.
An insider said: “Charles and other investors are unhappy with how the club is being run — especially the influence Malcolm has. There are worries that cash raised in the stock market float last year is being rapidly eaten into. Costs must be cut and revenues raised or Rangers are in trouble.
“But all we see is players being signed and season ticket prices being frozen.”
As yet there has been no announcement to the Stock Exchange about this requisition, nor even one saying that it was being examined. As Mr Green still owns over 5 million shares (even if he has pledged to sell them to the Easdales or someone else) there can be no doubt of his right to insist on calling such a meeting.
Ironically the declared purpose of the meeting, as per The Sun, is to deal with cost cutting. The cost of holding such a meeting however is likely to be considerable. All of the shareholders need proper notification and as we know Mr Green’s success in the share issue means there are lots of them! That is a lot of money to be spent on stationery and postage!
So far, if my counting is accurate, seven players have been signed up for registration on 1st September. All of them are likely to be on wages far in excess of Second Division levels and more likely at higher than average Premier League pay scales.
Messrs Bocanegra and Goian have left, cutting the wage bill, at least on paper. However, as they were both on loan last season Rangers would have been relieved of paying their full wages, and undoubtedly they will have required a “pay-off” to terminate their contracts early. It is also clear that, despite their apparent marketability, no club was willing to entertain paying a transfer fee for either of them, which would have meant that their departures would have brought cash in, rather than resulting in expenditure out.
On the other hand, as Rangers have made clear that debt (or at least “external debt”) is bad, then next season’s running costs depend on (a) how much of the share issue funds are left and (b) how many season tickets can be sold.
Rather than gamble that fans might not be happy with watching Rangers go the “Gretna route” of buying players one level above where they are playing to ensure promotion and then repeating the exercise each year till the Premier Division is reached, those in charge decided to sign Premier Division players.
So that will bring in more season ticket money, but also increases the outgoings.
From what The Sun says, Mr Green does not like that plan and wants to come back to keep a careful eye on the cash, and after all, who could want to prevent the Businessman of the Year returning, especially if, at some point next year, a new share issue might be needed!
Posted by Paul McConville