Following the launch of our "Million Reasons" campaign on Monday, April 25th Wrexham Supporters Trust has received indicative offers of support totalling £125,000 to date.
Launch of Wrexham Supporters' Trust bid to acquire Wrexham FC
We were delighted with the response from fans, business people and the local and national media to the launch of our bid to acquire Wrexham FC and its assets on Monday this week.
Response from fans: Members of the Trust Board handed out 2,500 leaflets before the Tamworth game and were overwhelmed by the response of fans to our campaign. To date we have received indications that individual fans would be prepared to invest over £75,000 in shares in Wrexham FC, should the Trust be in a position to acquire the club and conduct a share issue. This is a tremendous response from fans in just 5 days of the Trust launching its campaign.
Response from local business people: We are delighted to have been approached by a number of potential investors in Wrexham Football Club œ one of whom has expressed an interest in investing £50,000 - and are in the process of following up a number of additional leads provided to us. This shows the willingness of the local business community to support Wrexham FC and also demonstrates that businesses believe that the club can be financial successfully in the future.
Response from the media: We have received incredible support from our local and national media, including BBC Wales, the Daily Post and the Leader. BBC Wales invited us onto its Good Morning Wales and Good Evening Wales shows on Monday to discuss the launch and reaction from fans, whilst our local newspapers have agreed to actively promote our ¢‚¬Å“Million Reasons¢‚¬ campaign going forward, with a series of articles and features on our bid.
The BBC London Non-League show, which has and continues to be a big supporter of Wrexham Supporters Trust and Wrexham Football Club, also featured the bid launch on its show at 7pm on Monday. Following the launch, the BBC online team has been in contact for updates as it continues to provide regular reports on the unfolding situation at Wrexham Football Club. The Western Mail has also been tracking our story for the past few weeks and has also been very supportive.
Resolution of the HMRC Winding Up Petition
We are relieved to hear that the tax liability due to the HMRC appears to have been resolved in advance of the hearing on May 11th. We understand that the hearing will still proceed, but hope that it will now be dismissed. However, we are very concerned by emerging reports that the players have not been paid this month and will meet as a Board on Monday to discuss further.
Progress towards understanding Wrexham FCs financial position
No further work has been undertaken during the Easter holiday in regard of the due diligence exercise. The Board will meet this week to discuss whether to progress with Stage 2 of the exercise.
Due Diligence Exercise: As reported in last weeks briefing, we have now had sight of the management accounts and the forecasts for the 2011/12 season but have been advised that some information is missing and that key areas require further investigation. Subject to approval by our Board and the Directors of Wrexham FC, the next stage of this exercise will involve interviews with club officials to explore areas of concern and to develop a robust budget for next season.
Annual General Meeting and Elections to the Society Board
The Society Board have set a provisional date of June 30th for this years Annual General Meeting. The exact venue, date and time of the meeting will be confirmed to you at least 14 days prior to the meeting taking place.
Elections to the Society Board: If you would like to become involved in the running of WST, with EIGHT vacancies available on the Board this year, now is the time to put yourself forward.
In accordance with the WST Election Policy an Election Supervision Group (ESG) has been set up. The Chair for this group will be Campbell Smith of Chester City Fans United who will be supported by current Board members Mark Williams and Thomas Stanford.
The Secretary has written to all members this week with full details of the election process.
Update on discussions with potential partners
The main news this week is that we have been approached by a local business person who expressed an interest in investing £50,000 in Wrexham FC.
Discussions with local businesses: Following the launch of our bid to acquire Wrexham FC, the Trust was approached by an individual interested in investing £50,000 in the club. We have had an initial discussion to explore the proposal and plan to discuss as a Board next week. The local businessman who we met last week has been on holiday this week, so we plan to resume discussions next week .
Ashley Ward consortium: The Ward Consortium has resumed its interest in acquiring Wrexham Football Club and has asked to meet with us next week to discuss a potential deal in which Wrexham Supporters Trust would take a minority shareholding of 25.1%. The Board will then meet on to discuss their proposal in more detail before deciding to continue with discussions.
Steve Cleeve: We have agreed to meet Mr Cleeve in the north West prior to the Luton Town game on May 5th. In particular, we plan to discuss his proposal to take a majority shareholding in Wrexham FC, which he stated in the Daily Post on Tuesday following the launch of our bid on Monday. We will also be exploring which aspects of the club he envisages Wrexham Supporters Trust might run in such a scenario.
Stephanie Booth: We were disappointed to hear Stephanies reaction to the launch of our bid to acquire Wrexham FC and in particular her criticism of the Boards business credentials. We hope that our feature in the Leader and Daily Post on Thursday this week addressed some of her concerns about the Boards background and experience in running businesses and managing budgets, some of which are much larger than Wrexham FC.
Friends of Wrexham Football Club: In last weeks briefing we stated that we had been approached by a group of Wrexham supporters who wanted to establish a network of like-minded individuals who have the skills, time and money to invest in Wrexham FC. The Board has not had the opportunity to meet this week to discuss formally, but is keen to speak to any potential investors who have the best interests of Wrexham FC at heart.
TNS: We regret to inform members that we have not yet had an opportunity to follow up our telephone discussion with a representative of TNS, but plan to do so next week when Board members return from leave.
Further to last weeks briefing and due to its significant workload the Board has decided that it will ask potential investors to submit documentation in advance to enable it to prioritise meetings and to decide upon which Board member is best placed to attend.
Fundraising, Merchandise and Events
Members of the WST fundraising team will be outside the Turf selling merchandise and signing up new members before the home leg of the play-off against Luton Town. Please pop along for a chat and to ask us any questions in regard of this briefing or our campaign to acquire Wrexham FC, the Racecourse and Colliers' Park.
Play-off scarfs: The Trust is delighted to announce that it has procured a small number of limited edition play-off scarfs which will be available to fans prior to the first leg of Wrexham v Luton semi-final match next Thursday, May 5th. These scarfs are limited in number, so please get to the Turf as soon as possible on Thursday evening to get your scarf. We hope to have additional stock by the away leg the following week if you are unable to buy one on the night.
Results of the Wrexham FC Supporters' 8-a-side competition: Congratulations to the Buckley Reds who beat Mold and District Reds 2-0 on penalties in the final of the annual 8-a-side supporters competition at Colliers Park before the Tamworth game last Monday. In a competition dominated by defence, the Buckley Reds didnt concede a single goal on its way to winning the competition. The Trusts team, which also didnt concede any goals, beat the Rhos Reds to finish third.
WST Merchandise: The play-off against Luton Town at the Racecourse on May 5th is the very last chance you will get this season to get your hands on exclusive WST merchandise. Items that we have for sale include the Our Club, Our Ground range of car stickers (£1), Red Hoodies (£25), T-shirts (£10), mugs (£5) and car kits (£5), Wrexham FC T-shirts (£10), The Turf mugs (£5), Oh Fluffy Sheep Mugs (&poun d;5) and WST baseball hats (£8).
Buckley Reds Football Forecast: The profit from the Buckley & District Reds Football Forecast this weekend will be donated to the WST. Please feel free to download the form from here and print some off for family and friends to enter. It costs just £1 a go and can be returned, without a stamp, to 'Freepost WST'. Many thanks to the Buckley Reds for this generous gesture.
Supporters Direct NewsWST is delighted to announce that Ian Lucas MP has accepted our invitation to attend the launch of Supporters Directs two reports into football governance on May 11th at the Houses of Parliament.
Facebook: Supporters Directs new Fans Page on Facebook will replace Supporters Direct current Group Page. Just visit the new page here and click like to access more articles, videos, photos and debates than ever before. This page also aims to be more interactive, so its an opportunity to share thoughts and experiences with members of other supporters trusts. In particular, there are regular updates about the Football Governance Inquiry.
Fans Weekend: The SD Fans' Weekend which includes the SD Annual Conference and SD Cup will take place in Chester, on Friday 15th and Saturday 16th July 2011. The Conference will be held at The Queen Hotel on the Friday and the SD Cup will form part of a Fans' Day held on the Saturday at the Exacta Stadium, home of Chester FC. Tickets are £37 for members of Supporters Trusts and £42 for non-member. Click here for further details.
Football Governance Inquiry: Supporters Direct is launching two reports to coincide with the conclusion of the government's inquiry into football governance which is due to report very soon - Developing Public Policy to Encourage Community Ownership in Football and Developing Football Regulation to Encourage Greater Supporter Involvement and Community Ownership. Wrexham Supporters' Trust is proud to have been invited to this event following our submission to the Football Governance Inquiry