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Buncey

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Everything posted by Buncey

  1. Buncey

    What was the point of Ed Balls?

    OK I'll bite... There is a way to read it. That is, the words I have written. Not your inference of it. If I wanted to say "he made the decision" - I would of. I did not. If you have misunderstood what I've said, that's off your back not mine. (p.s. definition of instrumental: "serving or acting as an instrument or means;useful; helpful.") Again, I never said the corporate governance issue was 'unusual'. That's your interpretation. I really have no idea how you leapt to that conclusion. Perhaps you have some perceived notion of what I was trying to say. I've got no idea why you seek to twist my words. I don't think I've wronged you at any point. Neither do I think I've said anything unreasonable. I've only tried to give a balanced viewpoint mixed in with some of my professional and personal experience. I'd hoped that readers might have found that interesting or helpful. Perhaps not. It seems I've touched a sore subject with a few posters for whatever reason.
  2. Buncey

    What was the point of Ed Balls?

    With respect Purple I am not. NCFC is a public company with a significant number of minority shareholders. I don't care for what other clubs do. We're not talking about Man City or Chelsea 100pc owned by billionaires and to which some consider a 'plaything'. In fact, the NCFC cannot act in the same way as those clubs precisely because it has a duty to shareholders other than the 'owners'. Regardless, good governance is good governance. I'm sure fans of Coventry, Bolton and even Ipswich would likely agree with that. I can't be alone in wanting Norwich to be run with more oversight than those clubs. Least of all as a shareholder! I also did not say Moxey was Balls's decision. It's very disappointing for you to say that. In fact, I'm saying quite the opposite! I trust you said it in error rather than to distort my words. You should know me better than to be some troll. Regardless, we don't know how the decision was made. But we know at the time Balls was performing both executive functions and chairman functions (which were never clarified). It's clear that he would be heavily involved in that decision. That is not some leap of logic. Maybe instrumental wasn't the right word. But I am only trying to give balance to some of the other comments (such as, the DOF was his idea and he made it happen). Anyway, that's enough for me for another year. I've gone well over my yearly quota of posts and have very much come to regret it.
  3. Buncey

    What was the point of Ed Balls?

    No offence Mr Squit but no need to be rude. I know for a fact (ITK) that he wasn't contactable for most of that specific day.
  4. Buncey

    What was the point of Ed Balls?

    Well I was coy with my wording. But deliberate. Which comes down to the rather boring topic of corporate governance. (I'm a forensic accountant by trade). At the time of the Moxey hiring, Mr Balls was acting both as Chairman and doing 'some executive roles' for paid remuneration. It was never made clear what exactly those roles were. Regardless that's a big red flag in corporate governance and, in my view, in contravention of the UK Corporate Governance Code. Something Mr Balls would have been very familiar with given his previous role as Shadow Chancellor. (I made those views clear on this forum years ago). The reason it's an issue is the chairman's role is to provide critical oversight to the decision making of the company. It becomes very blurry when the chairman becomes part of that decision making. It's a stretch to say that the Moxey fiasco was down to this governance issue. But I certainly think it was a contributing factor in why it was such a dog's breakfast. Mr Balls has himself admitted that hiring Moxey was a mistake at a previous AGM. With regards to transfer deadline day. I don't, and that should be very obvious given what I've said above, expect the Chairman to be calling the shots. But, they should be there to critically challenge any major operational decisions. If, for example, we received an offer to sell our best player at well above market price, I'd want the Chairman to be making sure we as a club were making the right call by asking questions and analysing the options. Not something you can do when you are spending all day filming in a studio. None of this should be read as if I don't appreciate the role Mr Balls has performed. He appears to have done well given he stepped into the role during a difficult time for the club. However, any assessment must incorporate the good and the bad and avoid being clouded by our current short-term (though hopefully long-term!) success on the pitch. With all that said, one final point. This forum, and the public in general tend to lionise the senior management in companies. Few companies are run as dictatorships (and none should, it often ends very badly which I can professionally attest to). Decisions come down to the hard work to a collection of people. I was always very wary of the cult that built around McNally. And equally sceptical of the septic criticism Delia gets for that reason. Anyway, Mr Balls has come and gone. So will a new Chairman. Our fortunes will ebb and flow. Plus ca change.
  5. Buncey

    What was the point of Ed Balls?

    There'll be a few who will over egg his contribution. After all politicians are good at self-promotion. Granted he has a good network of contacts and people in the right places. That said on transfer deadline day 2016 he was busy dancing and not in Norwich seeing to business on arguably the most important day of the season. He was instrumental in bringing in Moxey which was a very costly mistake. Of course, he was also part of bringing in Webber and moving us towards the director of football model. How much that was 'his idea' is open to debate. Given Delia's historic statements advocating that model and our failed attempt with Joe Royle et. al in 2014.
  6. Oh for an edit button for my typos...

    In retrospect, "minor miracle" is perhaps too strong a word. More cutbacks and players sales are required. I''d imagine once the financial transition to a Championship club is more complete (i.e. most of the highest earning players have moved on) breaking even is a good possibility (that''d be, not in next year''s accounts, but the year after).

    That''s my bi-annual post done for now.
  7. After backing out the £12.2m for onerous contracts then total wages and salaries are at £34.0m.(£12.2m is a lot of money! This figure almost definitely Martin and Naismith. From my fag-pack maths, it probably Jarvis and Wildschutt and Oliveria too. My maths being: £39k pw = 12.2m / 52 weeks / 6 (that is, 6 years of contract payments, 1 for each, 2 for Oliveria). I think it clearly illustrates how painful bad transfers can be.

    Overall, the wage bill shows the club has been cost-cutting well. But as Purple says, there is still some way to go.

    This was a bumper year for player sales, £48m in total. This being coming from the sale of, amongst others, the Josh and Jacob Murphy, Maddison, Pritchard, Howson, Dorrans and Jerome. I very much doubt we will reach anywhere near that figure next year.

    That combined with the end of parachute payments (c.£17m) means the club will need a minor miracle to be profitable next year.

    One slight area of concern is the consistent decline in both our commercial and catering income. Perhaps understandable as we spend longer outside the PL. But historically, it''s been a feather in our cap compared to other Championship clubs. Careful stewardship of that part of the business is required.

    I think it''s worth crediting Webber and co. with some good work in getting money for players. Of those c.£48m in player sales, we''ve already brought in c.£25m in cash which has given us good leeway to reinvest into the squad. We''re due another c.£20m or so in cash within the next year, a further c.£22.5m thereafter. On the other side, we owe c.£8.8m in the coming year and c.£5m thereafter. This gives us a bit of room to pump into the squad if the right opportunity comes up. In short, I would say that ''the committee'' has done a good job balancing the conflicting cash and investment needs of the club.

    We''ve impaired (written-off) the value of players by about £9m. I suspect this is Wildschutt and Oliveria (I''m pretty sure Naismith and Jarvis have already been written down entirely). Generally speaking, the club has been pretty active in writing down players (the benefit of not having to ''worry'' about loses). This puts us in good stead going forward as any player sales are likely to result in accounting profits on disposal.

    The net current book value of the squad is £14m (down from £30m) and save for some big purchases, will likely tick down further. Our amortisation (the annual reduction in player values) was still high last year at c.£14.5m. As the value (purchase cost) of our squad moves towards the single-digit millions, I imagine this will be the last year of such a high charge.

    Some minor notes, director costs are also well down £100k vs £1.1m (£400k salary plus £700k pay-off to Moxey). There may be no, or nominal costs next year given that Steve Stone has left the club. As Purple notes, he still put £20k into the Canaries Bond. Though it appears Smith & Jones did not, they did however, loan the club £250k last year.
  8. Great news for the club.

    Two comments:

    1. On the number of investors/money raised; a rule of thumb is called the pareto principle (which applies to many walks of life). Broadly, roughly 80% of the money would have been raised by roughly 20% of the investors.

    2. A thanks to Van Wink on the waiting list. The information wasn''t explicit on what would happen if the bond was over-subscribed. Looks like first-come-first-serve. Bear in mind all that the club does have the ultimate right to reject your application (if something is wrong in your application for example).

    Thanks to all who put money in!
  9. If you''ve pre-registered you will now have access to the investment documents and be able to invest.

    I''ve read through the two documents: (i) Invitation Document; and (ii) Bond Instrument. I though I''d share some comments. Do bear in mind, I''m not an FCA-authorised IFA and I provide my comments for information purposes. It shouldn''t be considered a recommendation to either invest or not invest in the bond. While I believe all the information is accurate, it may include errors or inaccuracies. If you are considering investing, I would recommend speaking to a IFA and you should also consider your tax position. If you have questions about your tax position, think about speaking to a chartered accountant. With that out of the way...

    [Where I give a clause number, like 2.2, I''m referring to clause 2.2 of the Bond Instrument, the legal doc for the bond. Where I give a page number, like p33, I''m referring to the Invitation Document.]

    Some comments:

    - You''ve got to be over 18 to invest

    - If you decide to invest you have 14 days in which you can change your mind (statutory "cooling-off period")

    - You have to invest in multiples of £500

    - There''s no maximum (up to £5m)

    - The club has to raise £2m to issue, if it doesn''t it''ll return your money

    - There is no stated mechanism if the bond is over-subscribed (i.e. it doesn''t say if it''ll use first come first serve or proportionality). It can do what it pleases.

    - The use of proceeds is set out on p24 and p25 of the Invitation. If the club gets more than the £3.7m it plans to spend it on further works at Colney.

    - The intention of the raise appears to be pretty clear - the investment is to maintain Category 1 status for the Academy (mentioned numerous times, p21 p22 etc.)

    - The financials are at p26-30 in the Invitation. I won''t go on about finances but of note, the club has negative cash for the last two years. On p31 the Club states its a going concern, but to have a positive cash balance the Club will have to sell players in 18/19. The club is aiming to be cash neutral from 19/20 onwards excluding player sales (by reducing wages etc.)

    - The risks are set out on p36-38 of the Invitation.

    Bond terms:

    1. The bond is unsecured (that is, it is last in line for paying out and has no claims against the fixed assets of the Club). It''s issued by Norwich City Plc which is the parent company of the Club''s operations. On the other hand there are some relatively strong covenants to protect the bond holders (p33). These are:

    1a. Protection against extra dividends - the club can''t suddenly start paying extra dividends to the owners (5.1 and p34)

    1b. Protection against non arms-length transactions over £1m - the club can''t undertake to make less favourable transactions that aren''t arms-length (5.2 and p34). For example (and completely made up), paying Delia £2m for a guest appearance on TV on behalf of the club or buying all of Mr Foulger''s chickens for double the market price.

    1c. The club has to offer to redeem the bonds (at 101% of principal) if it sells "material assets" i.e. Colney or Carrow Road (6.2.2 and p34).

    1d. The club also has to offer to redeem the bonds (at 101% of principal) if the club has a change of control - roughly speaking if Delia and Mr Wynn Jones no longer control more than 50% of the shares in the club (6.2.1 and p34).

    2. Interest - is paid annually and in arrears (4.2). 5% in cash, 3% in club credit for a total of 8% on the OUTSTANDING principal. Both are considered interest for tax purposes. Your interest will be paid net of 20% tax (p35). The club interest can be used on tickets, hospitality, refreshments, merchandise and special events. It cannot be used towards season tickets. The credit lasts for 12 months and does not roll-over, "you use it or lose it" (p10).

    3. Promotion bonus - is 25% of the OUTSTANDING principal held as at 30/09 of the year the club is in the Premier League. It''s payable once only (4.4).

    4. Redemption - The bonds can be redeemed by the holder on the later of 5yrs or on the anniversary each year after the 5yrs (6.1.1). But if the club gets relegated in the 5th year, the club can push out the redemption to 6yrs (6.1.2). You have to give electronic notice (i.e. through tifosy website/portal) AT LEAST 6 months prior to the repayment date (i.e. before 4 and a half years are up) if you want your money back on the 5th anniversary. You''ll be given notice 1 month before the four and a half years as a reminder (6.1.2). You don''t have to redeem but...

    4a. The club can pre-pay up to all of the principal and accrued interest after one year. i.e. it can reduce the outstanding principal to nothing after one year is up. If the club has repaid all the principal, the outstanding principal is nothing and you''ll get no interest and no bonus. In short, the club can pay you back whenever it wants after year 1.

    5. The bonds are not transferable - you can''t buy and sell them (2.35). The mechanism by which they are transmitted via inheritance or bankruptcy is set out in clause 12. The bond cannot be held by more than one person except you can hold the bond in joint names if you are spouses (2.3).

    6. The bonds become immediately payable on default (administration, wind up or default on payment) (8.1).

    7. The bonds are probably SIPP-able, you need to contact your SIPP adviser and go via them to get the bonds in SIPP (p34).

  10. @GP''s Beard - you make some very good points. And its something I alluded to in my second post. The Club are looking at this bond issue because they need money. And they need money because they don''t have money. Now I''m not being facetious here, but if everything was hunky-dory and we were rolling in cash I doubt the club would want to spend all this money raising debt.

    If the bond is subscribed enough, then the club will get a bunch of money. Which it will then spend on the academy leaving the club again with no money. Except in 5 years, they''ll need to pay the bond holders back their money.

    So if you are going to invest in the bond, you need to believe the club is going to find someway to make money such that it has enough to pay you back in 5 years. The academy by itself isn''t going to make money - it doesn''t sell anything. As you point out, there''s only two real ways (that I can see) the club can make back the money needed: promotion or selling players.

    This is part of the reason why this bond is a difficult investment to fully understand. I have no idea whether we will get promoted in the next 5 years. And whilst we have some quite marketable players right now we could sell, you can''t guarantee you are going to be able to sell them at a good price. I think a lot of people''s decisions will come down to how much you ''believe'' in the club.

    I''m entirely speculating here, but this is my guess at why the club is doing this. The board have decided that our Academy facilities are vital to the sustainability of the club and that they need to be improved immediately. We don''t have the cash available now - but we will when we inevitably sell players in the summer. But using transfer receipts isn''t viable because: (1) the works need to be started asap, and we can''t wait to get the money in; and (2) the board are concerned it will look bad to the fans if sell, say, Josh Murphy and instead of reinvesting in the squad we build some new buildings with it. (even though, as you suggest, to pay back the bonds we may end up needing to sell players!)

    I also agree on the 3% credit interest. I don''t like these types of thing, because they are confusing, tricky for tax purposes and you aren''t really getting money, just some money off in the club shop.

    @Diane - You will be able to transfer the bond, the money won''t be lost.

    If a bond holder dies then it would go into their estate for inheritance tax/probate. At that point the executors of the estate should contact the trustees (Tifosy), asking either to transfer the bond to a new person or to redeem. Usually, when you subscribe for the bond you''ll receive a bond certificate. Attached to the certificate will be a form which you fill in and send to the trustees when you want to redeem your bond. There is also usually a slip which you can use to update your details (change of address etc.). Some issues are now all electronic - you can do all of it online - you can also often call to arrange for amendments, but usually you must redeem via the certificate form. I''m looking at prospectus I have on my computer and there was term setting out what you have to do if a bondholder dies.

    @Supermarket Sweep - usually the bonds are prohibited from being saleable on the open market. It will depend on the terms and conditions. For example, the bond prospectus I have on my computer says the following:

    "The Bonds are not transferable and cannot be sold or traded. The Bonds may only be redeemed by the original Bondholder."
  11. @Tilly - Thanks for this. And that sounds about right. I was thinking of putting a guess at the cost to the club, but I was worried I''d be plucking numbers out of thin air. Typically the costs of these types of issues are around 10% sometimes going up to 15-20% for more challenging ones. But, Tifosy are new on the block, and this issue brings a lot of publicity. If you had put a gun to my head I''d have said about 8% - 10% at the high end, 5% at a lower end. It''s even possible that we are getting this raise for a nominal fee, although I think that''s unlikely.

    @Platonic - As quoted from the Godfather: "One lawyer with a briefcase can steal more than a hundred men with guns."

    You always have to read the small print. I don''t think there will be any ''nasties'' in there, but you never know - never make assumptions. There was a very big legal case between Lloyds and bondholders. Lloyds raised some bonds during the financial crisis to keep it afloat at a very steep price. With things going well they wanted to early reedem the bonds and used a controversial mechanism in the agreement to redeem them at a lower price. Went all the way to the Supreme court with Lloyds winning - analysts estimated that it netted them a £1bn windfall.
  12. Sorry all, no idea why is keeps sending out all that garbled text - I''m only using the quote function (which used to work!)
  13. [quote user="Sooty"][quote user="BarclayWazza"]So much for self funding... they already want to borrow £3.5m which will cost approx £5m to repay. If we don''t get promoted, where is this coming from?

    Delia... Just accept for the greater good of the club that you do not have the resources to make us competitive and relinquish the club to someone who does. It''s your mismanagement that didnt sort this while we had Premier League money.

    I''m not committing any of my money purely because this is something that she should be funding as owner so it enables her to cling onto control which she has neither the finance or acumen to do us justice.[/quote]eh ?Do explainBunceyI cannot really see any risk ie the club going bustAs you said, banks would almost certainly not stump up (note to another post), even then the cost (interest) would be far higher.Once ''risk'' not mentioned is that at the moment 5% sounds a good return. Who knows where interest rates will be in the future so you bond may look a lower return come 3 years down the line.Even with £5m raised the interest paid out would still only be £250,000, plus the cost of the £5 in goods - truck as it was known in years gone by.however if this keeps the Cat 1 academy going those costs will be more that met by the FA funding of Cat 1. Looking at the quality (value) of players coming through Godfrey, Lewis, Cantwell, Mathews et al I can''t see this as being anything more than keeping that ''gold mine'' going whilst allowing as much as possible for the first team squad

    ps for the numpties .......... Delia/Wyn are the majority shareholders so why are you not whining that the rest of the ownners (shareholders) are not funding this ?[/quote]

    Hi Sooty, you raise a good point regarding interest rates. I''m often asked what I think will happen with interest rates and much to the annoyance of everyone I always say I have no idea. Even Mark Carney (Governor of Bank of England) doesn''t know (if the rest of the Monetary Policy Committee disagree with him!)

    Each person will have to look at their current circumstances, their mortgages, savings, other investments, not to mention their own feelings towards the club, to work out if investing is the right thing to do.
  14. [quote user=" Badger"]Thank you Buncey - very helpful.I don''t suppose you know whether it is possible to hold a mini bond within a SIPP?[/quote]

    Thank you Badger.

    Mini-bonds can usually be held in a SIPP. However, you will need to speak with your SIPP provider as not all providers allow it.
  15. [quote user="nutty nigel"]A question if yiure still around Buncey...

    Is it possible to buy these bonds as a syndicate dividing the cost among friends and family? If so are there any obvious drawbacks?[/quote]

    Thanks for the kind words Eddie.

    It is sometimes possible to buy these bonds in a syndicate (or via a company). However, sometimes these bonds are opened to individuals only as the are few more regulatory hurdles you have to go through if you want to issue to companies.

    There are two ways you could do a ''joint investment''.

    One is that you set up a limited company, each contribute money for shares and buy the bond through the company. This can be quite expensive, there''s quite a bit of paper work. And as mentioned before companies might not be able to buy (i.e. it''s individuals only).

    The second way, is for everyone to loan the money to one person who buys the bonds. Two issues with that - friends and family can fall out over money (it does strange things to people) so writing a short signed agreement is wise. Secondly, there are tax issues to consider around the interest as it will depend on your individual circumstances (and whether the money given to the bond holder is a gift or a loan).

    Either way, it would be wise to speak to an accountant about it.
  16. This is post number 2 -

    why would the board issue this mini-bond?

    In short, you issue bonds like this because you need money. The club has been in a difficult cash position since relegation, requiring at times overdrafts to cover times when cash is low.

    Why now?

    The club could possibly fund the development out of transfer fees. But there are two problems with this. 1. Fans like to see money from player sales invested in the team, not into "bricks and mortar". 2. The transfer fees we receive are likely to be towards the end of August (when the transfer window closes) and we may not receive some fees for a year/number of years as many transfers are now on structured payments (i.e. you don''t get all the money upfront). By raising money now, the club can do the developments perhaps before the start of next season and therefore get the benefit earlier on.

    Why don''t the club issue shares like they''ve done in the past instead of this bond?

    The first answer is cost, share-issues are much much more expensive than debt raises. For a small amount (which this is) a share-issue would be prohibitively expensive. Secondly a share issue has the added complication that if a shareholder doesn''t want to put money in, they will get "diluted" by the people putting new money in. That means some shareholders would end up a larger percentage of the company after the issue, which may cause "political issues".

    Delia is rich, why doesn''t she stump up the cash herself?

    Firstly, we should be careful what we mean by rich. Delia is rather wealthy, but relative to other football club owners she is a pauper. The Sunday Times estimated her net worth at around £55m, by comparison Marcus Evans is estimated to have a net worth of around £700m to £1bn! This leads to the second point, a large percentage (if not a majority) of Delia''s worth is tied up in Norwich City - both financially and from a branding point of view. Putting more money into the club, would mean putting more eggs in a single (rickety) basket. Thirdly, Delia has been reluctant to charge (or take) any interest on loans she has given to the club. Putting her own money towards the development, and not charging interest would mean some pretty hefty losses for her to swallow. Finally, all the above assumes Delia has the cash floating around. Given a lot of her worth is tied up in the club, and no doubt in other areas and investments, she might not even have the cash on hand.

    So no to shares and Delia lending the cash, why not a bank?

    There are probably three big reasons why we''ve not gone to a bank. Firstly, banks are increasingly reluctant to lend money to football clubs - they see them as really bad deals (and to be fair, they are). Football clubs usually have to pay a very high cost to get a bank onside. Secondly, a bank would want to secure the loan onto the Academy as collateral. This could mean the Club loses Colney if it gets into financial difficulty (see Ipswich and their ground). A bank would also likely ask for various covenants (i.e. financial stats the club must adhere to) which if the club were to break, the bank could demand repayment. These can often be quite onerous - some clubs have been forced to fire-sell players to meet cash covenants. Which leads to the third point, our club''s history with the banks. Whilst we have generally had a good relationship with our banks, there have been a number of times where the banks have almost pushed us into administration (end of the Chase era, Collapse of ITV Digital and funding the South Stand redevelopment). The club just doesn''t need the headache of dealing with bankers.

    What about the positives of a mini-bond?

    Well to begin with, the people lending the money typically like you (unlike bankers) and will be fans of the Club - displaying a strong sense of loyalty. Secondly, from my experience, lots of mini-bond holders don''t automatically redeem their bonds when they are due - often they are left for a long time after they can be redeemed - the bank will demand their money back as soon as they can. Another bonus (mentioned in my previous post) is that the bonds are typically unsecured (i.e. the Academy won''t be used as collateral).

    Mini-bonds like these are becoming increasingly popular. And Norwich are being particularly pioneering in teaming up with Tifosy which is venture by former Chelsea player Gianluca Vialli and an ex-Investment Banker who specialised in Sports and Media. It''s an interesting area, and I personally think we will see more crowdfunding-type investments in the football area.
  17. I thought I''d share some thoughts. As an introduction I''m a Chartered Accountant and a Member of the Chartered Institute of Securities and Investments. And my professional career has been principally in advising private equity clients. Please note I''m not an FCA authorised financial adviser. The rest of my post is for information purposes and should not be considered to be advice recommending or not whether to invest in the bond. If you are considering making an investment, you should ensure you read all the documents yourself and conduct your own research. You should think about getting advice from and FCA authorised independent financial adviser. With that out of the way...

    Bonds like this, often called "mini-bonds" are an increasingly popular way for small private companies to raise money. In this post I''ll talk about the details of the bond. I''ll do another post about why the board may have gone down this route. At the moment, the bond prospectus isn''t available, so we don''t have all the information - it looks like it will be published on the 28th March.

    The first thing to note about the bond is that it offers 8% interest paid each year. This is a high rate compared to high street fixed savings deposits. However, there are three major drawbacks to this.

    Firstly, 3% of the "interest" is in the form of credit with the club - and it appears, from the limited information available, that it can''t be used towards Season Ticket costs (the major expenditure for the majority of fans). Secondly, at a high street bank you have the protection of the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) which means that if you bank goes bust you get up to £85,000 back. This bond has no such protection.

    Secondly, it appears (although there isn''t enough information yet to be certain) that this bond is unsecured. i.e. even though you''ve lent the money to fund the Academy''s development, you have no collateral over it or any other assets of the Club. If the Club goes into administration, you''ll be the last people owed money, and would likely get little to nothing back.

    Is it likely that the Club would go under? That of course is a very difficult question. The club, as discussed when the finances were released, is having cash difficulties since relegation. Also, given the historical position of the majority owners towards debt, the club wouldn''t likely be issuing this bond if it had the cash available to develop the Academy facilities. I have personally invested in a mini-bond of a company that has recently gone into administration (I successfully redeemed before the fall of the company, many others have not). And there have been numerous instances of other companies failing and leaving bond holders with a loss.

    Thirdly, you have to tie up this money for 5 years. Usually with mini-bonds, there is absolutely no way you can get the money early (unlike with some savings accounts where you can, with a penalty). We don''t know the terms yet, but if you are thinking of investing, you have to be prepared to not have the money invested for at least 5 years, with no way of "getting it out".

    Another thing to consider is tax. As other have noted, lower rate tax payers (20%) have a savings allowance of £1,000; higher rate (40%) have an allowance of £500. Any aggregate savings interest below this amount is tax free. If, when you add up all your interest for the year, it is above the allowance you will have tax to pay. This will probably (although I can''t say for certain) include the 3% credit, as this is counted for interest for HMRC''s purposes (not that, if it doesn''t meet certain criteria the whole 3% credit may be taxable as it won''t be covered by the allowances). The interest is payable each year. Also, it''s not clear whether the 3% credit rolls up (i.e. if you don''t use it, you lose it). If you currently earn significant interest income, you should carefully think about your tax position, as you may need to do a self-assessment tax return, please speak to an accountant (preferably a charted accountant!)

    The 25% bonus is a particularly unusual element of this bond. It would appear quite generous as there is a possibility (depending on how pessimistic you are!) that the club will reach promotion in the next 5 years. Do bear in mind however, that if the Club is promoted, then the need for this bond likely disappears and the club may redeem the bond early. We don''t have the details yet, but read carefully about the early redemption clause - I''m speculating here, but conceivably the club could redeem the bond the day / match before we are promoted making no bonus payable (although that would be a pretty odious thing to do... but I''ve worked for many companies that do that kind of thing).

    Finally, there is of course the emotional element to this bond. You would be helping the Club we all love, at a particularly difficult time. There is an element of pride in seeing us build facilities for our Club''s future. In addition, there are a number of "Investor Privileges", some of which are things that are not generally commercial available and may attract a large sentimental value for many fans. When it comes to these sentimental things, do try to weigh up how much the are worth financially to you, and what price you''d be willing to pay for them were it not for this investment. That way you can try to work out what the return on the investment is and compare that to the risk you''d be picking up.

  18. Buncey

    Accounts released

    [quote user="PurpleCanary"][quote user="Buncey"]@Purple - He was a director according to companies house and resigned in August. I think that perhaps re-emphasises my point - which I mentioned last year - there has been a lack of transparency as to how decisions are being made since McNally left.

    @Eddie - thanks for the kind words.

    @Rhubarb - I know my post may be construed as being overly "positive" but I think the big negatives have been covered in great detail (the loss, decrease in revenues, compensation payouts). I''m just trying to add a few things that others may not have picked up or elaborated on.[/quote]Buncey, I don''t think that is right. Having just looked, it says Stone stopped being company secretary in August, not that he ceased to be a director. And there is no filing for him having become a director before that. And these latest accounts do not have him listed as  being a director on June 30, 2017, which they should do if he stepped down in August. And since he was only filling in as CEO making him a director before he got the job permanently, even assuming he was going to, would have been unusual.[/quote]

    Quite right. Thanks Purple!
  19. Buncey

    Accounts released

    @Purple - He was a director according to companies house and resigned in August. I think that perhaps re-emphasises my point - which I mentioned last year - there has been a lack of transparency as to how decisions are being made since McNally left.

    @Eddie - thanks for the kind words.

    @Rhubarb - I know my post may be construed as being overly "positive" but I think the big negatives have been covered in great detail (the loss, decrease in revenues, compensation payouts). I''m just trying to add a few things that others may not have picked up or elaborated on.
  20. Buncey

    Accounts released

    As usual, Purple has excellently covered most of the big points. All I can do is chime in with a few minor ones.

    That said, this is, again, a rather boring set of accounts. Very little surprising information and again showing a company with good financial strength (despite us losing our Premier League status).

    So onto my few minor minor points:

    1. Despite what the "doom-mongers" may say, the accounts show that when it comes to buying and selling players the club is doing a really good job. Overall the total book value of our players declined by only 3m last year, that''s despite us selling Redmond, VOO, Van Wolfswinkel, Olsson, Brady and Canos and spending far less in replacements (Pritchard, Nelson, Yanic and also Canos).

    This means that, generally speaking, we sell players for more money than we buy them for. This is very important for us as a club, as over the last two year selling players has accounted for £32m whilst we collectively made only £7m in net profits. Many clubs will be very envious that we are doing so well in the transfer market.

    Unfortunately, I''d expect next years'' accounts to perhaps not look so rosy as we released a lot of "deadwood" over the summer for little return. On the other hand, we sold Jacob Murphy for a good deal of money, which from a financial perspective will likely offset that loss.

    2. The second place where our good player trading shows up is in impairment - there is none. That means we aren''t "writing off" players as duds. Last year there was an amount for around a 4 million which was likely due to us "cutting our losses" on RVW and writing down Naismith. It remains to be seen if we''ll be writing off any more players this year, but really beyond perhaps Jarvis due to his injury problems or Naismith (if he wasn''t written down enough already), I can''t see any more write-offs to come.

    3. Collectively, what 1 & 2 mean is that if things were to go "mega tits-up", we are very likely have at a min. £30m in the bank in readily saleable players (the £30m being what''s in the books for the players). That doesn''t mean we will sell those players, but it makes it much easier for us to borrow money (if we need to) against the value of those players. Furthermore, we are due a net excess £3m in cash for our player trading last season which will also help with our cash position plus and extra £8m in net sales for this season.

    4. A minor, but interesting thing is that unlike during the McNally era we didn''t cut down on staff numbers last year. McNasty was almost comically ruthless in cutting staff numbers to the bone whenever we were relegated, but last year the total number of staff actually ticked up. Of course, this means that job losses were in the pipeline once we missed out on promotion - which we have seen over the summer. This is a necessary result of us being a Championship club and not a Premier League club for now.

    5. Super minor thing, but the club has provided (i.e. taken an extra hit) on tax liabilities for "certain overseas loan players". As the only overseas loan player was Dijks then it means we might have to pay an extra £0.6m to £3.4m on that deal. The tax boffins have already done lots of number crunching and think that it''ll be around £0.7m, so unless it''s more than that, we won''t have any further losses.

    A final thing which isn''t in the accounts, but I was hoping for some clarification on is to do with Steve Stone. In the summer he was made Managing Director and relinquished his financial role at the company. The new FD is Ben Dack. The curious thing is that Steve resigned from the board over the summer (after the year end), so technically speaking, despite "running the company", he doesn''t have to be at board meetings. I was hoping the accounts may have shed a bit more light on how Steve will interact with the board, and perhaps why it was felt necessary for him to no longer be a board member. My instinct is that nothing in practice will change, Steve will still be giving key input into the board. But, as I''ve said in the past, the board are a bit clumsy on their admin/legal matters and would do a good job of being a bit more transparent on them.

  21. Buncey

    Ricardo's report AGM 2016

    Thanks Ricardo. It is difficult to read between the lines having not been there in person. It really adds more importance to the issues of recruitment and our recent poor run of form.
  22. Buncey

    Ricardo's report AGM 2016

    To add:

    It is wholly unsatisfactory (and possibly in breach of companies law) that Ed as non-executive chairman was also performing executive duties. Part of his job as non-ex chairman is to provide independent scrutiny to the executive functions (i.e. making sure they are doing their job). He clearly can''t do that if he is involved in those functions. This is very disappointing given the historical question marks raised around the board''s independence.
  23. Buncey

    Ricardo's report AGM 2016

    Thank you as ever Ricardo.

    Having (just about) read everything, some thoughts:

    1. The £90k - sounds reasonable, but why was it publicly stated that Mr Stone was interim CEO and not Mr Balls. And why was Balls'' role not disclosed earlier? It shouldn''t take a question on £90k in the accounts to find out Mr Balls was actually performing some of the CEO duties (over the most crucial period of the calendar, transfer window etc.) This isn''t a stick to beat the club with, the fans (and shareholders) should know who is ''running'' the club in such a critical time.

    2. There is a legal requirement for the directors to each have 100 shares, but that doesn''t answer why these appear to have been "given" to Mr Balls and Mr Smith Jr for £1. The same mechanism was not used for Mr Moxey (Mr Smith Sr appeared to transfer Mr McNally''s shares to him). Whilst I appreciate the figures are small and this may seem rather abstract to some, but corporate governance is important - the fans need to know that the directors of the club are competent and not "cutting corners". That we also ''once again'' filed the completion statement late at Companies House is another concern.

    3. It''s not clear exactly the starting point Mr Stone''s £7.5 million cash outflow is starting from (all sorts of figures seem to be getting thrown about, but I''ll go with Ricardo''s, hoping he wasn''t drinking too many Peronis). Assuming the starting position is that in the annual accounts of a negative £2.6 million cash balance this suggests that we will be some minus £10 million in cash. So either: (i) we are going to have to sell quite a few players to cover the deficit; or (ii) we are going to take on some form of debt. I''d suggest neither option is great news.
  24. Buncey

    2016 AGM

    In response to Nutty''s post at 23/11/2016 12:55PM

    Nutty - Archant do have a shareholding. 3,500 shares from what I can see.

    Purple - you are quite right. It is Archant''s job, and we aren''t talking about getting private documents or investigative journalism. All the information they need is in the public domain.

    On a final matter, the club filed the annual confirmation statement late last week (and almost a month overdue). It shows that Balls and Smith Jr were allotted their shares. Curiously, McNally transferred his to Mr Wynn Jones who then transferred those to Mr Moxey on 8th and 9th September. It''s a little odd that the transactions would differ between them (or why it took so long for the McNally/Moxey transaction to take place).
  25. Buncey

    2016 AGM

    If somebody wants to cause a ruckus:

    If the answer to Purple''s question 1 is the mechanism set out in Resolutions 5 and 6 of last year''s resolutions what assurances can the majority shareholders and board of directors provide that they will not undertake to dilute the shareholdings of the minority shareholders (I. E. The fans). And what safeguards will the board of directors undertake to ensure this. (ref s561 of the companies act)
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