After weeks of speculation, and contrary to numerous assurances given by the “glib and shameless liar”, and swallowed whole by the Scottish media and the majority of the Sevco support, the club today announced that it will be forced to de-list from the AIM Stock Market because it has been unable to find a nominated advisor.
At the present time, they are without a NOMAD, an auditor, have a temporary first team manager and are third in Scotland’s second tier.
A dozen players are out of contract at the end of the season and they are facing multi-million pound repairs and infrastructure spending on the stadium alone.
For the last 12 months they have stumbled through on short-term loans.
Now their plans to raise the money they need to get through the close season and the first half of the next are in utter ruins, as they’ve failed to avoid de-listing.
I had no sooner finished publishing an article on Paul Murray’s latest bizarre statements and the way the media won’t deal in reality, over on On Fields of Green, than this latest bombshell hit.
Yes, we’d been expecting it. But the media apparently had not.
They even had the timeline wrong, telling us all Sevco had until Saturday.
They missed the fact that the Stock Exchange closes on that day and that tomorrow is Good Friday.
Easy mistakes to make, unless you can read a calendar.
This was not a great surprise, but it is still a serious blow from which the club will struggle to recover in the short to medium term.
It is a shambles, a failure, by King and others, of a staggering magnitude.
In practical terms it is not only a huge embarrassment, but deals a nearly fatal blow to their hopes of raising cash through a fresh issuing of shares to new “investors”, something that is only possible with a stock exchange presence.
Instead it will fall on the current “investors”, many of whom will see the value of their shares drop like a stone on the back of this news, to find the cash to keep on the lights.
Many of these are fan organisations who will be face a choice between stumping up more money or watching their club drift to the edge of the abyss.
If they choose the first option, at great cost, they will see the voting power and influence of those shares diluted anyway.
This would suit King, who is against the concept of fan ownership or influence on the board, which is why he and his cohorts chose Chris Graham as their “fans representative” in spite of all his historical baggage. They had his loyalty already, and knew he wouldn’t rock the boat.
Some Sevco sites, and all of the Celtic blogs, have been predicting this chain of events, but the sheer scale of these reversals has surprised even seasoned Scottish football bloggers.
No-one imagined so much crisis would swirl up the Broomloan Road this quickly.
Since King and co mounted their “seizure of power”, a series of revelations have spilled into the mainstream press about the leakage of money out of the club.
They have criticised the old board for not selling enough season tickets, perhaps forgetting they were the ones who urged fans not to buy them.
They said a NOMAD would be found.
They told the media they would back Kenny McDowell and not be forced into a quick decision on his management.
They appointed a “fan” to the board and they said there would be significant investment made.
Now that investment depends on the status of Dave King.
The fan representative resigned in wholly predictable disgrace, after less than half a week.
Kenny McDowell has been put on gardening leave with his mate, a double whammy which has the club still paying the salaries of guys effectively doing sod all.
They’ve announced that they’ve lost their auditor and now have failed to find a Nomad.
In four weeks, they’ve gone from crisis … to more crisis.
In the meantime the media loses its mind with joy because they’ve beaten Hibs for the first time this season and managed a late home victory over the club bottom of the Championship.
Today’s news is a disaster, though not an unexpected one.
It means that a share issue can no longer save them.
The Ibrox operation is now in the deepest peril since Whyte stopped paying his tax bills.
It will be interesting to see how the press spins it …
Enjoy your weekend, fellow Troops in the Hoops.