UPDATES to ‘Insolvency round-up’
Posted by John Beech on September 12, 2009
I’ve added a couple of short updates as ‘comments’ on the ‘Insolvency round-up’ posting, specifically on Lewes, Portsmouth, and Southend.
For some of the clubs I selected there is more substantive news:
- Accrington Stanley
The first two days of the ‘Save our Stanley’ campaign (although ‘Save Stanley’s Board’ might be nearer the mark) raised £10,000 towards the the debt of £308,000 to HMRC (1), and a fund-raising match against neighbours Burnley has raised over £40,000 (2). The entire staff have given up a day’s wages, saving the club £4,000 (3). There is a clear theme of desperation in this, which makes it all the more surprising that the club has turned away two expressions of interest in buying the club, one from Accrington Stanley Supporters Fund (4). I would have thought the latter would be better advised to hold back and see the club go into Administration and an end to the current regime – they should have the resolve of the Supporters Trusts at Halesowen Town and Merthyr Tydfil. If the best strategy the current board can offer is to go cap in hand to Blackburn (5) and Liverpool (6), then it’s surely time for them to hand over the reins .
The future of the club effectively lies in the hands of Ilyas Khan, long-time would-be owner (7)
Eddie Mitchell has said he will not follow Accrington Stanley in getting out the buckets for collections (8). In the same interview, he admits that he has been juggling the finances of the club since he took over 11 months ago. Four possibilities: due diligence wasn’t very thorough; he was very naive; he didn’t have enough to invest; or he’s a glutton for punishment – or, of course, a combination of the three. A clue is perhaps provided by this thought of his, from the same interview: “We did a cash-flow this week and, without the current liability and outstanding debts, we would have broken even this month, which is a really good sign.” Paying the football creditors is still a problem, with the resultant transfer embargo still in place.
- Harlow Town
Things look increasingly dire. The electricity supply has been cut off, and to play floodlit matches a generator has been hired. This broke down three times in the first 25 minutes of the game against Concord Rovers. Not surprisingly the referee declared the match abandoned, and Harlow Town face a serious fine from the Isthmian League, the last thing the club needs at the moment (9). The prospect of a large fine may seriously jeopardise the club’s attempts to negotiate a CVA.
Another low point has been faced, and overcome. The appeal to raise £50,000 to avoid going into Administration was extended last Wednesday by a week (10), and then yesterday (Friday) came the welcome news that the target had been met (11). The club still has a long way to go though.
I’ve still not managed to find out what is happening with Hyde United, given an eight-week reprieve in the court battle with HMRC on May 20th over debts of £200,000, and I’m guessing that none of their fans read this blog!