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Legislation: Compulsory 25% Ownership of Football Clubs by Supporters' Trust


Ericz
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What do you think of an idea where there is a compulsory legislation or regulation stating that there should be a compulsory 25% ownership of the football clubs by its Supporters' Trust?

 

What is a Supporter's Trust?

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supporters%27_trust

 

What are the advantages of such a legislation?

 

* Providing an identity for fans

* Forging a greater bond between the fans and the club they support

* Closeness between the club, the players and the fans

* Ability to take a more active role in the management of the club

* Possibility of a Supporters' Trust providing funding to the Club

* More transparency between fans and the club - could lead to more understanding

* Safeguard to irresponsible owners - check and balance

 

What are the disadvantages?

 

* Business not lucrative enough to attract investors

* Possibility of Supporters' Trust causing unnecessary hindrance to the club

* Possibility of the management becoming a populist management

 

Other issues

 

* Other conditions to think about: - i.e. Supporters' Trust can ONLY hold 25 % shares, should it be restricted to only local fans or international fans?

* Other problems to think about: - i.e. What if the club issues shares - will it not dilute the ownership of the Supporter's Trust or must the Supporter's Trust engage in compulsory acquisition? How to bring it up to the Government or respective authority?

 

 

 

Please discuss. I would like to hear your views.

 

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Guest Roger Kint

Sounds completely unworkable, we cant even get Ashley to leave the sign on the fucking front door alone let alone giving up 25% of his business to a Supporters Trust. Speaking of which does that mean the NUST gets it by default and us fans would have to pay them to be part of it or would it be open to all fans irrespective of giving them ££££ like they work now?

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How can you force a privately owned business to give away 25% of their business for nothing. Whilst it would be nice, at the same time it's crazy and won't happen ever.

 

If I am not mistaken, legislation is able to achieve that aim. It depends on how the legislation is being drafted/worded. There would definitely be some consideration which will not put the current shareholder(s) in an unduly unfair circumstances. It could be a forced sale and purchase type of transaction.

 

The true question is whether is it sound enough for parliament to adopt such measures.

 

 

In principle, absolutely. Can't see how it could ever work though. I think making it exactly 25% rather than allowing it to get higher might also be a good idea.

Great idea, personally i don't think it needs to be as high as 25%,  even 10-12% would be a suitable stake for the trusts to have.

 

The magical 25% is because usually for special resolution, one will need 75% of the votes cast in order to veto certain decision. The 25% is good because we can convince a minority or a minority can convince us whether to veto a particular decision by the majority. The ability for the Supporters' Trust to veto decision on its own may unduly hinder the proper functioning of the club. As a matter of fact, I am of the view that the veto powers of the Supporters' Trust should be limited and can only be used in certain circumstances, likewise, their powers should be limited as well.

 

binnsy is right. In reality, it could be 10 to 12% to be reasonably sufficiently to achieve most, if not all, of the advantages I have mentioned above. What I am opposed to is absolute ownership or majority ownership by the Supporters' Trust.

 

 

Sounds completely unworkable, we cant even get Ashley to leave the sign on the f***ing front door alone let alone giving up 25% of his business to a Supporters Trust. Speaking of which does that mean the NUST gets it by default and us fans would have to pay them to be part of it or would it be open to all fans irrespective of giving them ££££ like they work now?

 

For the first question, as above mentioned, it is possible by way of legislation.

 

The second question is an interesting one. I would think that fans who wants and able to contribute to the club can be a part of the Supporters Trust. The membership fees should be a reasonable/nominal one and the Supporters' Trust is free to accept donations. However, it must be mentioned and emphasized that not being part of the Supporters Trust does not mean that you are not a fan of Newcastle United.

 

As for whether NUST gets it by default, regrettably, they do have grounds to claim it. I am not sure as to how the situation will unfold. It can go either way really but the name of the Supporters' Trust must be 'Newcastle United Supporters' Trust' and not some wacko names.

 

 

Completely daft. Running a football club and running a pressure group for supporters are different roles.

 

Yes, I am sure they have different roles but I do not see any reason why as to they should not be together. From a corporate governance point of view, I do see certain benefits from such an arrangement i.e. check and balance, accountability, transparency and and involvement for the fans as stakeholders. Arsenal's Supporters' Trust has been doing quite well with these in recent years. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arsenal_Supporters_Trust

 

 

 

 

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It would depend if you thought football clubs are sufficiently different to other companies to make this feasable. I mean, why not make Cadbury's 25% owned by people who buy their chocolate?

 

Also difficult as clubs are becoming less and less public companies, shares often aren't even for sale in the normal sense.

 

Also, fans might not identify with a supporter's trust in any way. For example, I think a lot of what NUSC have done in the past is idiotic, I wouldn't want them to speak for me in the running of the club.

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Guest Roger Kint

Also, fans might not identify with a supporter's trust in any way. For example, I think a lot of what NUSC have done in the past is idiotic, I wouldn't want them to speak for me in the running of the club.

 

Pretty much why i asked the question.

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Also, fans might not identify with a supporter's trust in any way. For example, I think a lot of what NUSC have done in the past is idiotic, I wouldn't want them to speak for me in the running of the club.

 

Like what, out of interest? I thought they made a poor start but have been decent to good recently.

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Interesting idea, but it raises a lot of questions.

 

If it'd be a forced sale, who and how would assess the price of the 25% of the club?

If it'd had to be given to the fans for free, wouldn't it be against free market laws?

 

What if the supporters trust couldn't come up with the cash?

 

Would a supporters trust be able to represent the fans view?

Are the fans competent and educated enough in business matters to be given a voice?

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Guest Brummiemag

How can you force a privately owned business to give away 25% of their business for nothing. Whilst it would be nice, at the same time it's crazy and won't happen ever.

 

You force them to by passing a law making it compulsory

 

Sounds like a good idea to me, would be even better if it was more than 25%

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