Sense has prevailed amongst the Rangers shareholders and, as per the announcement on 19th July, the requisition of an Extraordinary General Meeting has been withdrawn. This was the meeting called for the purpose of removing Mr Murray and Mr Cartmell from the Board and replacing them with James Easdale and Chris Morgan.
All of those matters, except the appointment of Mr Morgan, have since come to pass, and thus Rangers International Football Club PLC (the company which owns the company which owns the assets and business which make up Rangers Football Club) is able to save itself the large sums needed to intimate and convene such a meeting where it has so many private individuals as shareholders.
Whilst, as we are all aware from the extensive coverage, RIFC is a cash rich company, there is never any harm in saving the costs of an unnecessary meeting.
But looking at the announcement, a couple of things caught my eye.
The first relates to the perennial question of whether the Club = the Company or not.
Regular readers will know that I have commented on the way in which the Stock Market announcements were, until the departure of Cenkos Securities as Nominated Adviser, all headed as follows:-
Rangers International Football Club plc
(“Rangers”, the “Company” or “Club”)
However, since the recent change to Strand Hanson, the announcements are now titled:-
Rangers International Football Club plc
(“Rangers” or the “Company”)
Normally this change would be of little or no significance. However, because the relationship between company and club has been such a contentious issue over the last year, it does not need one to have the mindset of the former Kremlinologists, who could detect signs of shifting Soviet policies because the Minister for Munitions was standing one place further away from Brezhnev at the May Day Parade, to see that there an issue signified by the change.
Could it be that someone has raised objections with the Stock Exchange about this?
(I want to make clear (a) that I have not done so; (b) that I will not be doing so; (c) that I would not be suggesting to anyone else that they should do; and (d) that I am sure the Stock Exchange has far more important issues to look into than this one.)
(And as a follow on to part (d) I am NOT suggesting that any of the more important issues which I am sure the Stock Exchange has open to it to investigate relate to RIFC, and no one should read that into the above comments).
(When you are having to put parenthetical comments on parenthetical comments, then perhaps one is getting a trifle convoluted…)
In any event, it will be interesting to see if the announcements, when they come again, restore the identification of RIFC with “the Club” or not.
There is also an interesting piece in the “blurb” at the foot of the announcement. Remember, this was posted on 19th July 2013 as an official announcement and therefore requires to fulfil Stock Exchange rules regarding accuracy.
The “blurb” reads:-
About Rangers Football Club
Rangers Football Club, formed in Scotland in 1872, is one of the world’s most successful clubs, having won 54 League titles, 33 Scottish Cups, 27 League Cups and the European Cup Winners’ Cup in 1972. The Club’s loyal and sizeable supporter base, both in Scotland and around the world, enables the Club to boast one of the highest percentages of season ticket holders in the UK, with over 38,000 having been sold for the current season. Playing at the 51,082 seats Ibrox Stadium and benefitting from the world class 37 acre Murray Park training facility, the Club has been a dominant force in Scottish football for decades. This world class stadium, training infrastructure and a loyal and passionate global fanbase provide an excellent foundation for the Rangers Group.
Currently the Club are Champions of Division 3 of the SFL and will be competing in Division 2 for the 2013/14 season, although it is the intention of the Directors and the manager for the Club to return to top level football as soon as possible. The history, facilities and ambition of the Club are such that the Club remains a desirable destination for foreign and domestic players alike. The first team squad is managed by Ally McCoist, the former Rangers forward, who remains the Club’s all-time leading goal scorer.
The “Ibroxologists” might read the above and note the repetition of “loyal” as an adjective describing the Rangers fans, but surely an English NOMAD would not be trading on the perceived “loyalist” connections of Rangers and its fans?
Of more importance is the apparent information which one would think was market sensitive, namely that, as per the 19th July announcement, over 38,000 season tickets have been sold. Is that the case, or instead has someone re-hashed an announcement from the end of last season, not realising that we are now, effectively, in 2013-2014? We are definitely NOT in 2012-2013.
If 38,000 season tickets have been sold, then that is a great effort, belying those who saw a likely drop in sales (and, to be fair, selling 30,000 in the present circumstances would be a praise-worthy result).
Maybe the season ticket figures can be clarified?
Almost finally, I have commented before about the repeated references in the RIFC Prospectus and in the Stock Exchange announcements to Mr McCoist being “the Club’s all-time leading goalscorer”. Bearing in mind he is the manager, one would have thought that some compliment on his managerial abilities would have been forthcoming, especially as he is now a triumphant trophy winner!
Surely, for the high fees no doubt charged by the writers of these announcements, they could be expected (a) to make sure that what they say is relevant to the time when the statements is published and (b) that they could find something else to say in praise of Mr McCoist!
Posted by Paul McConville