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SBD Global/June 6, 2013/Franchises

SPL Heart Of Midlothian In New Financial Trouble Over $154K Tax Bill

Scottish Premier League side Heart of Midlothian said that it requires an immediate upturn in season ticket sales if it is "to make it through the latest cash crisis unharmed," according to Moira Gordon of the SCOTSMAN. The Tynecastle club has "again incurred the ire" of U.K. tax authority HMRC due to an outstanding bill of £100,000 ($154,000). The PAYE settlement had been due on Monday and the club now has "a week to raise the necessary finance or be served with a winding up order." It is not the first time the club "has been threatened with such action and it was only through fan donations and a successful share issue" that it was able to pay off a £450,000 tax bill at the end of last year. The club also had to draw up a repayment plan with the tax man regarding another £1.5M bill. This latest delay "will test the patience of HMRC," but the club believes that a solution can be found (SCOTSMAN, 6/5). In Edinburgh, Diane King reported Edinburgh South Labour MP Ian Murray believes that "the route out of the mess relies on fan support for the umbrella group, which includes Foundation of Hearts, the Supporters’ Trust and Shareholders’ Association," which have banded together to pursue a takeover. He said, "We are pressing ahead with our plans. We’ve made significant progress in the last couple of weeks but obviously we would like to get things moving quicker. There’s speculation upon speculation upon speculation surrounding the future of the club, but at the moment it’s just that" (SCOTSMAN, 6/5).
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