Dave King’s statement on Rangers meeting

Dave King, South Africa-based businessman. Picture: SNS
Dave King, South Africa-based businessman. Picture: SNS
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THE full text of Dave King’s statement following his meeting with the Rangers board.

I refer to my meeting with the Rangers board and the subsequent statement by the board on issues that I raised with them.

However, first I wish to thank the Rangers fans for their support without which it is unlikely that the board would have met with me.

The more important issues I raised at the meeting were:

1. The lack of transparency on the financial position of the club.

2. My concern that the board was operating in a manner that would consign us to being permanent also-rans when compared to Celtic.

3. Fans could not be expected to pay for season tickets while uncertainty continued around the board’s ambition and funding of the club.

4. My concern that Ibrox and Murray Park would be used, directly or indirectly, as security for some form of financing.

The board has now publicly dealt with each of the above. The board has affirmed that it regards competition with Celtic and in Europe as being its continued aim and that this outlook will be reflected in the business review that will be published within the next month. Crucially, that will allow fans sufficient time to consider the review prior to investing in season tickets but it is also important that the board has now confirmed categorically that they will not use Ibrox or Murray Park as security for any form of fund raising.

No one should be in any doubt that this public statement and commitment is significant and should be appreciated as such. Statements from a public company board are intended to be relied upon so in a couple of weeks we can expect a business review that will reflect the board’s ambition and a funding plan to achieve this. We can also rely on the fact that if circumstances change the board would be bound to advise the public in advance of this.

The only significant issue that I discussed with the board that is not contained in the board statement is the Laxey loan facility. Mr Crighton, on behalf of the board, made a forcible argument as to why the board considered and approved the terms of the Laxey loan. The board considered that a combination of legal risk and the current financial position justified the loan terms. I replied that a consequence of the board’s view of the high risk to anyone advancing funds to the club is the board’s fiduciary responsibility to ring fence any season ticket money that is received (even if fans don’t request this) unless sufficient committed financing is in place at that time. The board did not agree with me on this logical consequence but I believe that my observation is correct.

The board has now communicated with the fans and has committed to do so in more detail within a month. Let us give the board time to comply with its commitment. I advised the board that I would wish to be a part of the required fund raising as a component of a united fan group investment vehicle. This will require further discussion after release of the review in the next month.