IMRAN Ahmad, the former commercial director at Rangers, has lost a court bid to have more than £600,000 of the Ibrox club’s assets frozen amid concerns over its financial viability.
At the Court of Session hearing yesterday, judge Lord Armstrong told Ahmad that he was satisfied the club would continue to trade for the foreseeable future, and was not at risk of insolvency, an event that would jeopardise Ahmad’s claim.
Lord Armstrong said: “I appreciate that there is some scope for concern as to the financial future of the defenders.”
The judge said he was told that the position of the Union of Fans group and former director Dave King amounted to a significant campaign which, taken together with protests at a home match against Dunfermline, indicated support for the strategy of withholding season ticket payments, said to be the primary source of income for the club.
The judge added that he was asked to place weight on sworn statements from club officials, including chief executive Graham Wallace, and said he was informed there had been meetings in recent days with institutional investors who were said to have “a good degree of confidence” in the management and were aware of difficulties.
“It is in effect confirmation that the defender is financially secure and will remain so for the foreseeable future,” Lord Armstrong said.
Ahmad, whose employment at Ibrox was terminated last year, is suing Rangers Football Club Ltd for £500,000 in compensation in a case that is due to go to a full hearing in November.
Ahmad’s counsel Kenny McBrearty QC argued that the fact that there was a risk of insolvency was a reason to grant the move to ringfence £620,000 at the Ibrox club ahead of his client’s legal action being heard. “What lies at the heart of the current application is concerns at sales of season tickets for the forthcoming season,” he said.
But Alan Summers QC, for Rangers, said: “It is not so much money from season tickets has been lost. It is rather a question of when the money comes to hand.” Asked by Lord Armstrong if he was telling him that Rangers are financially secure, Summers replied: “I am.”
An earlier bid by Ahmad to ringfence assets at Rangers ahead of his legal action was rejected in February by Lord Tyre.
BT Sport Q&A: Rangers | Hibs | Neil Lennon
THIS week’s BT Sport video Q&A looks at whether Rangers fans will buy season tickets and if the club’s supporters will force a change of ownership.
The form of Hibs under Terry Butcher is also examined following the Easter Road side’s derby defeat while the future of Neil Lennon is also considered following the announcement that his assistant Johan Mjallby is to depart at the end of the season.
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