This morning’s news from Ibrox, announced to the Stock Exchange, is that Ian Hart has resigned as a Director of Rangers International Football Club PLC.
The press release reads:-
The Company today announces that Ian Hart, Non-Executive Director, has resigned from the board in order to pursue the charitable work in which he is involved more actively.
Craig Mather, Chief Executive Officer, commented: “it is with sadness that we see Ian depart from the board and we would like to thank him for his valuable contribution over the past year. Ian remains a huge fan of the Club and we wish him the best of success in future.”
I won’t bother about the semantics of why the announcement refers to “the Company” and not “the Club”. After all this statement is actually legally correct.
It does however leave the Board rather light on personnel.
This, remember, is a PLC. It is quoted on the AIM. It is obliged to follow certain rules of good corporate governance.
These include matters like having a suitably experienced non-executive Chairman to protect the interests of the company and its investors, and an appropriate number of non-executive directors to work alongside the Chairman in overseeing the work of the executives.
All of this is designed to ensure that the executives do not, for example, treat a company as their own private piggy bank and award themselves ridiculous salaries. (This is a general comment and there is no suggestion that such matters have occurred within RIFC PLC.)
What does RIFC PLC have as its Board now, only two weeks before its AGM?
There are 2 executives – Messrs Mather and Stockbridge.
There are 2 non-executive directors – Messrs Easdale and Smart.
There is no Chairman and indeed since the resignation of Malcolm Murray there has not been a Chairman who has the recommended qualifications for non-executive Chairman of a PLC. (Walter Smith, for all of his many and undoubted talents, was not qualified, in my opinion, to be a PLC Chairman).
It is essential that new blood be added to the Rangers Board. However the Board do not want to take up the kind offers of Paul Murray and the Rangers Rebels to join. The longer the Board runs under-strength, the greater the possibility that someone will have a quiet word to get the problem fixed.
One also suspects that the newly appointed NOMAD (the third within less than 12 months) will be politely urging their clients to fill the gaps as soon as possible.
As has been the case for the last two years, the story just rolls on and on!
Posted by Paul McConville