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AFC Wimbledon are now on the second leg of their Bond to raise finance for their stadium and are well on course to achieve £1,000 raised per average attendance. 

Imagine if we could do that we would be well on the way to financing the Carrow Road extension.

Wimbledon have done it  by saying name your own interest rate by percentage point from 0 to 4 in round one now up to a maximum of 7 in round 2. Perhaps an average Cost of Capital of around 3% with no commitments to any promotion bonuses. A much cheaper Cost of Capital than NCFC incurred for its training ground development.

Do smaller clubs with limited resources do it far better?

 

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Good to see the real and only Don's club in existence getting a shout out.

 

Sadly much as a stadium expansion would be nice have we not heard it would only happen if we keep prem status for at least a few seasons?

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53 minutes ago, keelansgrandad said:

Is a stadium expansion necessary or is it fans just wanting a bigger ground. Portman Road envy?

Think I read somewhere that our average attendance is 99% capacity this season.

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58 minutes ago, keelansgrandad said:

Is a stadium expansion necessary or is it fans just wanting a bigger ground. Portman Road envy?

Both.

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1 hour ago, keelansgrandad said:

Is a stadium expansion necessary or is it fans just wanting a bigger ground. Portman Road envy?

20,000 season ticket holders, an extra 1,500 allegedly on the waiting list without any meaningful advertising or marketing campaign. I reckon with availability, they'd easily get 23,000+ season ticket holders. Then factor in anything from 1,000-3,000 away fans, I think we'd easily consistently sell 5,000+ casual tickets. 30,000+ more than realistic, even in the Championship I reckon.

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The supporters of tomorrow need more readily available access to live games today, otherwise they will find other things to habitually do when Saturday comes around.

Edited by BroadstairsR
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The club did a lot of great work in the late 90's in getting Under 18's into the ground on a regular basis who then as a consequence grew up as Norwich fans rather than Manchester United/Arsenal fans. 

Those same fans are now the reason the club has a big loyal season-ticket base but I worry the current Under 18's haven't had the same access in which to build up their 'live' experience, both in terms of access to tickets and affordable seating. This could then hurt us 10 years down the line from now. 

Edited by Bovril
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2 hours ago, canarydan23 said:

20,000 season ticket holders, an extra 1,500 allegedly on the waiting list without any meaningful advertising or marketing campaign. I reckon with availability, they'd easily get 23,000+ season ticket holders. Then factor in anything from 1,000-3,000 away fans, I think we'd easily consistently sell 5,000+ casual tickets. 30,000+ more than realistic, even in the Championship I reckon.

I always thought it was 22,000 season ticket holders.

In any case, I've always felt that a bond type affair whereby you invest and have a chance of securing a seat in the new stand when it opens if you are not already a ST holder or indeed get a certain % return if you were, would work. The last bond was a big success.

If the club then market it well and limit the season tickets to say 25/26k maximum at a decent price, they would sell. Leaving 3-4k for larger away followings and the rest for members, casuals and corporates. 

Couldn't see why achieving 30-35k a game is not possible

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4 hours ago, keelansgrandad said:

Is a stadium expansion necessary or is it fans just wanting a bigger ground. Portman Road envy?

If we have serious intentions of being an "established" Premier League team, we need to have a bigger ground + higher attendances. We also need sufficient capacity to allow us to sell cheap tickets to youngsters to grow the next generation of supporters.

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Because we're always at or near capacity casual pricing can be quite high, I think it puts off a lot of fans in the 18-23 age group who probably have to work weekends so can't justify a season ticket but are then put off by having to spend nearly £50 a pop for 90 minutes entertainment. Another demographic may be families who would all want to sit together but find it hard to find 4 or 5 seats next to each other available. Another point of note is how we grew our crowds in the early 2000's through cheap tickets and season tickets for kids, that's not really an option anymore with us having to ring out ever bit of value from the seats available but if there was plenty of room we could offer more concessions again and keep the influx of supporters coming in. I was actually an Arsenal fan until I was about 12, it was only because I had a season ticket bought for me for a number of years that I became a Norwich supporter.

Stadium expansion would allow the club to reduce prices a bit in some sections and would allow more choice of seating for people who would like to sit in certain areas together and allow us more room for concessions. 

I know you can point to seats being available regularly this season, but that's due to covid either putting a lot of people off, money being tight in the pandemic or sadly some of our regulars who haven't made it through, in a couple of years things should return to normal and if we want to maintain and grow the crowds we're going to have to encourage a younger generation to attend regularly and expanding the stadium would be key to that

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40 minutes ago, Christoph Stiepermann said:

Because we're always at or near capacity casual pricing can be quite high

Wouldn't it need to remain high to pay for the debt related to the expansion though?

I'd like cheap under 18 season tickets back though, even if just in the Riverend or something, need to invest in the next generation of fans like we did under Cullen.

Personally I'd just like a new City stand because the current one makes us look tinpot, its the stand TV viewers see when we are televised. 

32000 would be about right for us I think.

Edited by TeemuVanBasten

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54 minutes ago, Badger said:

We also need sufficient capacity to allow us to sell cheap tickets to youngsters to grow the next generation of supporters.

A lot of us seem to be on the same page on this point I think.

It is how we went from gates of 16000 to selling out a 27000 seater isn't it.

For me, we need areas of the ground where U12's are super cheap and U18's are almost as cheap as that.

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Classic pink un debate.  

There are less than 10,000 people in the entire world that dont think we should expand, every single one of them a season ticket holder

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6 hours ago, essex canary said:

Do smaller clubs with limited resources do it far better?

 

 I know lots of fans who felt that the 2018 fund-raising for Colney was handled very, very well. And I only know of one who constantly complains about that scheme. 

Could it be that some folk are just never happy?

 

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My son (who is 29) was able to have a season ticket as a child to begin his support of our club for a very small amount of money. When his children arrive it would be lovely for him to be able to do the same but the limited capacity and availability of tickets will make that hard. Our supporter base must be gradually getting older and older and we will be missing out on that next generation as things stand.
 

The existing main stand is an embarrassment and made worse by it being seen opposite the cameras at each game. With interest rates at historic lows and the possibility of another bond scheme to help fund it, cannot the club take a long term view and be able to manage loan repayments over ten to fifteen years to get that larger stand in soon. 

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1 hour ago, NewNestCarrow said:

 I know lots of fans who felt that the 2018 fund-raising for Colney was handled very, very well. And I only know of one who constantly complains about that scheme. 

Could it be that some folk are just never happy?

 

Thank you NewNestCarrow. A quite sensible posting you have made on the Supporters Panel thread re Bk8 but please feel free to explain how the similar cost of capital incurred over 18 months to fund a training ground with no income stream can possibly compare favourably with AFC Wimbledon's similar cost over a 10 year period to fund ground development that does have an income stream.

 

 

 

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11 minutes ago, essex canary said:

Thank you NewNestCarrow. A quite sensible posting you have made on the Supporters Panel thread re Bk8 but please feel free to explain how the similar cost of capital incurred over 18 months to fund a training ground with no income stream can possibly compare favourably with AFC Wimbledon's similar cost over a 10 year period to fund ground development that does have an income stream.

Wimbledon's scheme is brilliant, I think we're all in agreement with that and it's generated some really constructive debate on this thread regarding ground development. I would posit that the developments at Colney, which the bond was partially responsible for funding, have greatly enhanced our Category 1 Academy and made us a much more attractive proposition to young footballers from across the country and beyond.

Obviously the proof is in the pudding as to how much income these developments generate in the form of transfer fees for future Academy graduates and/or on-pitch success for NCFC, but I think it was a well-executed and well-received campaign overall.

I also note that nobody has said anything negative about your original proposal regarding the Wimbledon model; it's a great idea in principle, I'll look into it a bit more.

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On 28/01/2022 at 23:13, Feedthewolf said:

Wimbledon's scheme is brilliant, I think we're all in agreement with that and it's generated some really constructive debate on this thread regarding ground development. I would posit that the developments at Colney, which the bond was partially responsible for funding, have greatly enhanced our Category 1 Academy and made us a much more attractive proposition to young footballers from across the country and beyond.

Obviously the proof is in the pudding as to how much income these developments generate in the form of transfer fees for future Academy graduates and/or on-pitch success for NCFC, but I think it was a well-executed and well-received campaign overall.

I also note that nobody has said anything negative about your original proposal regarding the Wimbledon model; it's a great idea in principle, I'll look into it a bit more.

Thanks Wolfie.

The rewards for fans would be much more modest than the Colney more like the 3% (on average) that was given in vouchers though clearly in this instance it could be paid in cash. Wimbledon's scheme also provides the same terms and conditions for inheritors therefore somewhat different to NCFCs shareholder initiatives.

The repayment schedules were 5, 10 and 20 years. Clearly the Club would need to meet those unless it was able and willing to convert at least some of it to equity. Perhaps advance payment of seats is also possible something like 15 years for the price of 12?

At the end of the day if Wimbledon can do it, can we?

 

 

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I think it's a great idea. Given that a standard bank rate for football clubs is about 9% if you borrow against future sales etc then offering something much lower for "friendly" borrowers but which is still higher than available elsewhere seems like a bit of a no brainer.

We have to increase our capacity to increase our turnover, which in turn gives us more to spend within FFP and makes us a "bigger" club. Without a sugar daddy or mummy it's our only option. How much would it cost to build that new stand - £30m? £40m? In any event, it would need underwriting or we just give ourselves the same issues with funding the interest as we have with any other loan (5% of £40m is £2m a year - that's two players on £20k a week) - do we have anyone wealthy enough to do that?

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14 minutes ago, sgncfc said:

I think it's a great idea. Given that a standard bank rate for football clubs is about 9% if you borrow against future sales etc then offering something much lower for "friendly" borrowers but which is still higher than available elsewhere seems like a bit of a no brainer.

I have no idea if it would apply to us but Spurs are only paying 2.7% on most of their debt. I  presumed this is because it is a mortgage type of debt rather than the 9.5%+ the likes of Southampton pay for "football" debt. Their accounts report that they pay 2.7% with repayment terms extended to 2051with an average term of debt being over 22 years.

I know being a London-based  "big brand" they are likely to get better terms than us. but given our generally healthy balance sheet + the ability to use the ground + the training ground as security (they could hold the deeds until repaid) I would have though that we could get much better terms than 9%. If we could get anything remotely like Spurs (say 3%) it changes the equation considerably.

3% of £40 million is £1.2 million, which is relatively small change and I would have thought would be offset by extra revenue (not all football related - social facilities/ meeting spaces etc, taking advantage of more working from home + proximity to the station)

Caveat 1 - I am not a banker and have no idea how feasible this is

Caveat 2 - I know that interest rates are likely to rise in the short term, but will (hopefully) be lower before we got anything started.

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Nephew Tom’s going to be a wealthy chap one day. Once all this is bought and paid for.

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Not commenting on the bond suggestion but in terms of ground expansion I do feel our failure to do this is going to start hurting us. appreciate that at present we have a supply and demand situation and that in the short term, expanding ground capoacity could see the number of season ticket holders fall a little but as somneone who has two young sons its now nigh on impossible to get us all seats together for any match at premier league level. 

Ideally, i would get at least one more season ticket so I can take one of them but there is a waiting list for that. There are rarely, if ever, 2 seats together at the time i'm able to buy for them in the relevant sale window (I did suggest to the club they should set aside a block forcasual sales to people with kids so we could trade in our ST and get 2/3 seats together for certain games but nothing ever came of that) and basically it makes it really hard to get the kids in the "habit" of attending games in the same way many of us did 20/30 years ago. 

My boys will be Norwich fans, I will make sure of that, but its not always easy (given we don't live in Norwich) and I think the club needs to be aware that the ticket situation means that Carrow Road is really not very accessible to the younger generation these days and they rosk losing out on supporters of the future if they can't find a way to expand at some point. 

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