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SBD Global/August 8, 2014/Finance
Scottish Championship Side Rangers Forced Into Share Issue By Season Ticket Boycott
Published August 8, 2014
FRESH DOUBT: In London, Mark Walker reported Rangers' future was "plunged into fresh doubt." The club had warned back in April in its business review that it would "look to exercise their right to issue shares if sales of season tickets were 'materially less than anticipated.'" Rangers also announced that a total of 43.4 million shares were "available to be released to existing shareholders, but stressed there was no guarantee they would all be sold" (LONDON TIMES, 8/7). The BBC's Chris McLaughlin reported prior to the "announcement of a scaled down share issue, potential city investors were being asked to buy in at around 25p per share -- the current price is around 30p a share." The presentation document, aimed at "selling a stake in Rangers, highlights plans for the club to be financially sustainable" by the end of the '15-16 season through "restructuring the business in a strategic three-year plan" (BBC, 8/6). In Glasgow, Gary Keown reported former Rangers Chair Alastair Johnston "has branded the size of the crowd at Rangers' Petrofac Training Cup win over Hibernian as a 'warning sign.'" He insisted it is "too early to make predictions about attendances despite the fact only 18,318 people" attended Rangers' first home game of the season. Johnston, however, sees a "clear need for the SPFL Championship club to pay closer attention to their fanbase as they push ahead with plans to plug funding gaps with another share issue destined to be worth far less" than the £10M ($17M) they had hoped for. Johnston: "I am always wary to make predictions about summer when you see one swallow fly" (HERALD SCOTLAND, 8/7).
'NOT ENOUGH': In Glasgow, Greig Cameron reported Rangers' Union of Fans "described it as another example of the short-term thinking which is hampering the club." The Union of Fans' Chris Graham said, "We know that £4M is not enough to do anything substantial to improve the club. It is literally just money to keep the lights on and I'm not even convinced it keeps the lights on much beyond Christmas. There doesn't appear to be any long-term plan" (EVENING TIMES, 8/7).