Well folks, isn’t the net something?
No sooner had I posted my article on the “essential work” going on around Ibrox, but one of the guys on Twitter (thanks @jinkyssoars ) pointed me to a new piece of information which today was put into the public domain; another Companies House filing from Ibrox, again relating to the Close Brothers agreement, but this time with an added twist.
Close’s deal with Sevco gives them £3 million; Sevco sites said that was a good deal because the valuations of the land which was securitised against that loan were, in their view, not worth that sum of money. Close knew that. Which is why they insisted that those parcels of land were maintained to an appropriate level.
As we can see, that is now partially or wholly being enforced by them.
But they had issues above and beyond that, and as it just so happens those are not the only pieces of Sevco which are securitised under the loan. The information which has been placed in the public domain tonight makes it clear that parts of Ibrox itself are also securitised; namely, the PA system, the kitchens, the stadium wifi … and the big screens.
Do Sevco fans realise what happens if the club can’t pay these guys back? As I pointed out, the Club Deck certificate depends on the Albion Car Park. Sevco fans might think that the council will not enforce that but without access to the kitchens the ground is shut. Without a public address system, on which safety assuredly depends, the ground is shut.
Imagine those big screens at Ibrox with the words “Offline due to non-payment of debts” on them? Well, Sevco fans, don’t worry because that’ll never happen. If Close ends up putting the club in that position the party will already be over.
Close Brothers have an iron hand around the club’s throat. This is about more than a car park and a disused building. They have fingers inside Ibrox itself, and they are closed around prime assets without which the club can’t function.
The way they have completely covered themselves here, every angle, every avenue, should scare the living daylights out of Sevco’s fans.
The promise that Ibrox itself would never be used as security has been kept, but what’s that worth if the place itself can’t open for business because the car-park is off limits, the wifi is offline, the kitchens are shut and the public address system has been removed and you’re reduced to making safety announcements on megaphones like we were back in the 1920’s? The promise not to use the ground as collateral on a loan was always a nice sounding thing, but without any weight.
A safety certificate, a club license, depends on more than just having the ground and whilst the SFA won’t deny a license other bodies will.
And whilst directors won’t call in their loans an organisation which acts as ruthlessly as Close has will not hesitate to call in theirs, and will take their pound of flesh with it.
Sevco fans, your club is sleepwalking to disaster … are you finally going to wake up and start asking the questions that need to be put to this board of yours?
If you don’t, hell bloody mend you.
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