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MrBunce

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MrBunce last won the day on September 3 2021

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  1. I can't comment on the transaction with Archant but the Canaries Trust is the Norwich City Supporters Society. It's called that because it's a mutual society (i.e. run for community benefit). Lots of clubs have similar such societies. You can find the details of the Canaries Trust on the FCA mutuals register.
  2. One question finally resolved, Mr Attanasio paid £10m for the C Preference Shares i.e. the nominal amount. This is set out in the allotment of shares form filed at Companies House and made public today. The shares were allotted on 27 September.
  3. I'm not on the low down with all this, but the implication I've seen elsewhere is that it relates to breaking the story on Mr Attanasio's potential investment? I appreciate you might not want to respond on that. If that's the case, I don't understand why the club have been so secretive over this whole thing. The latest instalment being shenanigans with the confirmation statement. I expect this kind of secrecy and difficulty with my Uzbek oligarch clients, not really with a community owned football club.
  4. I think @shefcanary is being a little bit uncharitable. Anthony said they run forecasting scenarios where the club does not get promoted. He said in such a scenario the club would rely on player trading. That said, one wonders how much we'd get for players who have been unable to achieve promotion for two years. That is perhaps a small concern.
  5. Fair play to Anthony, some good answers to some pointed questions - even ones which were a little unfair to lump him with (i.e. non-finance ones). Thought he communicated well, no bulls*** and jargon free.
  6. As a distraction from the on pitch issues... The confirmation statement has been filed at Companies House. It shows that Norfolk FB Holdings LLC is now the holder of 10m shiny new C Preference Shares. As I suspected way back, Mr Attanasio has used a coporate vehicle for the shareholding. Also as I suspected, Norfolk FB Holdings is a Delaware company. Unfortunately, the question of who's and how many shares Mr Attanasio has aquired is still unanswered. Boring, more technical stuff: The Foulger/Attanasio shares can be considered "Schrödinger's shares" as the annual report says as at 29 September 2022, Mr Attanasio had bought them, but the confirmation statement as at 11 October 2022 says they haven't been transferred yet. The last transfer shown in the confirmation statement is on 8 September 2022, when Archant transferred 3,500 shares to (it appears) the Norwich City Supporters Society. The allotment of shares form is still not filed. The annual report says the C Shares were allotted prior to the accounts (29 September) and are included in the confirmation statement, the form is possibly overdue (you have one month to file it). Those eagle-eyed may spot an inconsistency: the C Shares are shown on the confirmation statement, but Mr Attanasio's ordinary shares are not. I can only conclude the club have deliberately not registered the transfer of the ordinary shares. Aside from secrecy (or incompetence), I have no idea why they would do this. Finally, to show I'm still down with the meta - Smith and Jones probably transferred Zoe Webber 100 shares so she could be appointed to the board in March. Cue the outrage!
  7. It was an influx of approx £41m of cash. This is almost exactly the amount of cash paid out last year for transfers (signings from last year and previous years). Despite not selling any players for significant sums in the accounting period covered, the club received about £27m in cash for transferred out players, no doubt Buendia but also sales from previous years. That cash covers most of the operating loss and working capital movements. Overall, the club had a cash out flow of around £11m, leaving £5m in the bank.
  8. For those interested in an external perspective, you can hear Kieran Maguire's thoughts on today's Price of Football podcast, roughly 29 to 30 minutes in. He even refers to perusing a Norwich message board to see the thoughts of Norwich fans...
  9. It is perhaps a little strange that BDO and Norwich have parted ways. But it's not entirely unusual to change audit firms. Norwich had previously done so, moving from Grant Thornton to BDO. It might be the case the MHA Macintyre Hudson were a significantly cheaper option or maybe BDO were the ones who wanted to end the engagement. It should be noted that the former statutory auditor from BDO, Ian Clayden, is the auditor for several football and sports clubs. I can't recall stumbling across MHA auditing a football club. A Big 4 firm would probably be prohibitively expensive for Norwich - it's most only the 'top' teams that use one of the Big 4 (with a few exceptions). I'm not particularly concerned with Anthony Richens' prior employment with MHA - it was nearly 10 years ago. The little mistakes in the accounts seem impervious to correction. Various of them have persisted for some years. As far as I can tell, this year's accounts cast, which hasn't always been the case historically... These errors and lack of attention to detail bled into the EGM a month or so ago. It's a shame the corrections the club were forced to make hasn't led to them double checking things. On that subject, it's a shame that the post-balance sheet events note is rather vague. It would suggest Mr Attanasio has bought all of Mr Foulger's shares - but it's not clear if those shares are only the ones Mr Foulger directly holds or all the shares he effectively controls. The note also says that the C shares were allotted as at the date of the accounts 29 September. [The allotment has not yet been filed at Companies House.] I agree on the corporate governance issues. This has been a problem for many years going back to when Ed Balls as Chair was asked to perform executive functions. It's not best practice. But I can't see the club doing anything about it unfortunately. As Nutty hints, if Mr Attanasio completes a takeover then we might end up looking at the current level of transparency with rose tinted spectacles.
  10. @BigFish I was reflecting on my last post and wondered if I should add something, which your post has encouraged me to do. That is, I'm being a critical friend. The reality is, Norwich is an extremely well run club. That we are talking about wages being so high would be amusing to many other clubs who would only dream of balancing the books and achieving such regular success. I recall years ago we would have these threads on the accounts and the numbers would be a trainwreck. I (and others like @PurpleCanary and tangie) would write huge screeds about how "this doesn't look good" and "that is not ideal". Our accounts have been boring for the last few years, that's coming from someone who 'loves'* reading accounts. * according to my wife
  11. Thanks @Parma Ham's gone mouldy. Very interesting. I agree with your comments. If you're looking for a number to support why this strategy does not work / failed it is this: 106%. This number is the total staff cost plus amortisation divided by revenue. What this figure represents is the total cost (salary plus proportion of transfer fees) of putting the team onto the pitch. Last year, Norwich's team cost more money than the club brought in in total. How does that compare to previous seasons? Well this is the highest figure in the last twenty years, and the only time it has been greater than 100% when Norwich have been in the premier league (88% in 2016 being the previous record, when McNally "pissed the money away"...). It's only been higher in seasons where Norwich have been promoted from the championship to the premier league. Why is this a problem? Because if Norwich had stayed up, the club would have had to sell players to balance the books and replace with those with cheaper players. Those players are the 'weapons' and you are left with the 'bums on seats'. The strategy last season, as Parma set out, was to sign a lot of players and hope one or two might 'luck out' as a weapon. But as explained above, that is unsustainable at the cost Norwich ran at last year. Obviously, such a strategy looks worse given the club were relegated. One could argue we have no 'weapons' at all and we didn't 'bank' any premier league money unlike in previous seasons.
  12. On the £45,000pw average wage, this should be considered a guestimate. What Kieran does is take total staff costs (i.e. for us, inclusive of loan fees, social security etc.), this is £118m for the year. He divides this by 52 weeks to give a weekly cost - £2.27m per week. He finally divides by a factor of c.49.7 - this gives an average pw salary of c.£45,000. The 49.7 factor is a rough figure he's come up with to convert a total staff cost for a whole football club into an approximate wage for the first team squad. From what Kieran has said, it is quite accurate for a lot of clubs but can be a bit high or low for clubs which have different staff structures, number of support staff etc. The contingent transfer payments at c.£73m are the highest in club history. Contingent signing-on fees at £6.4m are only slightly higher than the average over the last 10 years of c.£5.5m. This reflects a few things: a general trend in football to transfers having more contingent elements (promotions, appearances etc.); signing younger players with more potential upside and a greater possibility of 'stretch' performance targets; paying money (i.e. transfers) for players compared to signing free agents; and Norwich actively seeking lower initial fees at the expense of higher contingent fees. For what it's worth, the signings of Sara, Nunez and Ramsey come with contingent payments of £4.5m depending on performance.
  13. A mixed bag of results. The good: Record turnover (£133m v £119m (2019/20)), principally from increased broadcasting revenue. [edit: corrected a figure] Record catering income (£6.1m v £4.6m (2019/20)). Loan player income came in at £6.4m. The club has done a good job at monetising players not ready or wanted in the first team. Over the past 10 years the club has made £20.8m in loan player income. The not-so good: Gate receipts still down compared to 10(!) years ago (£10.8m v £11.3m (2012/13)). Reflective of the relative lack of investment into Carrow Road. Commercial income down on 2019/20 £7.4m v £10.3m. I imagine principally due to the BK8 fiasco (although post-covid effects should not be ruled out). I would say the club has done a good job here in salvaging a poor situation. I'd also say it shows that some of the comments about the financial hit were overblown. The bad: Staff costs ballooned to £118m. The highest in the club's history. As a percentage of turnover (88%) it is the highest proportion in a premier league season in the last 20 years. Excluding promotion bonuses, it is likely the highest in any season in the last 20 years (promotion bonuses are not always split out). Given the on pitch performance, this represents appalling value for money. As Norwich are the first team from last year's prem (excluding Man U) to publish accounts, we can't make any direct comparisons. But this figure is higher than /similar to costs for 4 premier league clubs I quickly checked for the 2020/21 season: Brighton - £113m; Leeds - £108m; Southampton - £107m; Wolves - £139m). [edit: got the Norwich figure wrong] Other employment costs came in at £14.8m. This includes loan fees (before wages) and likely compensation for loss of office. The average over the past 5 to 10 years is around £3-4m. It's safe to say that the 'extra' £10m or so compared to priors years did not provide much value on the pitch. Other things of note: Negligible player trading but that's mainly due to the Buendia sale falling into the previous year's accounts. Net debt (my figures) now stands at a whopping £66.8m. This is primarily a facility to receive accelerated payments for media income and transfer receipts. Interest is charged at 5.6% / 5.75% up to March / September 2024. Interest costs were £4m last year. These arrangements are very common in football. I personally think (whilst acknowledging many people would disagree with me) that the benefit of such arrangements is overblown. Whilst these can help manage cashflow (and meant the club did not run out of cash), it can become a perpetual cycle of having to do this whilst eating interest costs. For example, Norwich started doing this in 2020 borrowing £10m against future income, then did the same in 2021 but for £25m (in part because the club had already borrowed £10m+ of that year's income). Then last year £66m. If Norwich get promoted again, the club will again have to borrow against future to be able to invest in the team as the club will not see some £20m+ of next year's income. Finally, capital expenditure was down by just under a £1m last year (£3.2m v £4.2m). The prior three years the club had invested around £18m in fixed assets. The reduction sees the figure only just beat out depreciation (£2.9m) which means the improvement in the club's fixed assets was effectively negated by their loss in value/natural wearing down over time. There's a balance to be had between investing on the pitch and off it. I think it is fair to say, with the benefit of hindsight, that the club got the balance wrong last year. I personally think the club need to keep up capital expenditure.
  14. It wouldn't be reflected in the Share Premium account as the club class it as a liability. The bit about the A&Bs in note 23 is a disclosure, they don't come into the balance sheet there. The total amount £100 (£1+£99) is a liability as the club has to payback the total amount paid up for the shares on redemption under the AoA. The thing that gets me is that the trial balance won't add up given they are using incorrect numbers!
  15. Just a warning - boring stuff follows, casual readers may safely ignore the following! 1. I would expect the C Shares to be classed (like the A & B Preference Shares) to be classed as a liability on the balance sheet (I think I had mentioned this in this thread a while ago). Although given the convertible element, the C Shares are, like you mention, somewhat different to the A & Bs. 2. Regarding note 23 in the accounts (assuming the numbers are correct, which they are not!), I don't think the note is incorrect. The note should show the nominal amount of the shares i.e. at £1. In liabilities, you would show the amount due i.e. the nominal plus premium which for the B Shares is £100 (£99 + £1) per share (I don't know what it is for the A Shares as that's well before my time). As such, note 23 shows £14k (i.e. £14,186) for the B Shares (nominal). Note 19 shows £1,419k (i.e. £1,418,600) for the B Shares liability. 3. Thank you for pointing out the error in the number of B Shares (something @GMF pointed out to me as well) - this puzzled me as I could not match the annual returns to the accounts. Following on from that, I imagine the mistake in the AoA was they thought the number of B shares was 14,000 due to looking at the latest statement of capital in which an additional 52 shares were redeemed and subtracting that from 14,052. But that 14,052 is after the redemption. Like you say, poor administration. 4. R.e. the memberships, didn't they years ago undermine this by creating different classes of membership? I can't remember now, but I recall a controversy a while ago. But it might be by memory failing me.
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