Present: Steve Brown, Jan Mokrzycki, Jim Brown, Pat Raybould, Pat Abel, Steve
Barnett, Kevin Heffernan, Dan Walker, Tim Fisher, Lee Corden, Andy Powell, Darren
Recap from Tim Fisher – On 13/3/13 an Administration order was submitted by ACL
to be heard in the High Court on 22/3/13. SISU placed CCFC Ltd into Admin on
21/3/13 and contracted Paul Appleton from Rubin as administrator. !
There are no more than 6 creditors to CCFC Ltd, those being CCFC Holdings Ltd,
Sky Blue Sports and Leisure, ACL, ARVO, CCFC Academy, Coventry City Council. !
There is to be a creditors meeting on 29.05.13 where directors of the creditors
listed above will attend. !
On 31.5.13 all bids are to be submitted to buy the assets/liabilities of CCFC Ltd. In
terms of the requirements of a bidder, the process is: !
• KYC (Know your customer) – where you essentially prove who you are
• Proof of Funds – where you prove you have the appropriate level of funds
• Formal Bid
• Decision by Administrator on successful bidder !
The football league currently has the Golden Share (License to play in the football
league) and will decide on apportioning membership at the point at which Ltd is
As far as Tim is concerned, all bank accounts are in holdings and there is nothing in
Limited – in his view, Administration won’t come to anything but will have cost a
lot of money. !
Kevin Heffernan stated that as he is aware, the player’s contracts are in Holdings
but their licenses are in CCFC Ltd. In the last set of accounts (some dispute over
the date, KH stating March 2013, Tim Fisher stating May 2012) the assets listed in
the company were: !
• Lease to play in the Ricoh
• Licenses for Players
• Football League membership (‘Golden Share’) !
Tim restated that all the economic benefit of membership to the football league
resides in CCFC Holdings. Tim stated that the lease was in Ltd, but that the
licenses for players are in Holdings and the Golden Share is with the football
Steve Barnett asked what would happen if someone other than SISU bought CCFC
Ltd. Tim said that the buyer would have to make an offer to the creditors and that
the administrator’s job is to protect the creditors and if possible, keep the
company going. The administrator makes his decision based purely on the numbers
and the best deal for the creditors. !
KH asked why SISU created 4 companies to run the club. Tim replied that they
haven’t, that some were already established and that it allows SISU to fund the
club in different ways, i.e. equity, loans, etc. !
KH stated he felt personally let down by SISU and that he thought they were going
to be CCFCs saviours when they arrived. Tim challenged why he felt let down given
how much money SISU had invested. !
Andy Powell said he felt that the reason fans felt let down was because when SISU
arrived we were mid table championship with a decent playing squad and a home,
and now we are mid-table league 1, £70m in debt, with a league 1 playing squad
and no home.
Tim said SISU were disappointed with the journey the club has taken. They bought
into a vision that the club would be restructured, led by Ray Ranson, to invest in
the club and get promotion to the premier league. !
Steve Brown changed the subject towards the fear of the club playing matches
outside Coventry and asked about getting a mediator to bring the 2 sides together
and ensure CCFC stay in Coventry. !
Tim said he had been told that negotiations were at an end, and has a letter from
ACL which says there will be no more negotiations. !
KH asked what is to prevent SISU publically stating they want to negotiate.
Steve Brown asked whether SISU remain committed to CCFC, and if so, why they
are looking to take the club outside Coventry. If SISU were really committed, they
would do a deal. !
Tim responded by saying that by moving outside of Coventry they are trying to
preserve the club. !
Steve Brown argued that this action was killing the club, and reiterated his desire
for Joy Seppala and Martin Reeve to meet and agree a deal. !
Tim said that ACL don’t recognise Holdings, they don’t even recognise Tim Fisher
anymore. They won’t deal with Holdings as they see the club as CCFC Ltd. !
Steve Brown and Steve Barnett both suggested the personalities involved were a
problem – a case of Mutton vs. Fisher. Andy Powell felt it was more like Council vs.
Big Corporate, and that the problems were much greater than Tim Fisher. !
Tim said that the long term vision is that the club own its own stadium with all its
own revenues. The prospective site is technically outside Coventry but basically
it’s in Coventry it’s so close. He again mentioned that he felt fans could buy into
that long term vision, but acknowledged that the journey from here to there is
Steve Brown asked if a short term deal could be done to keep the club at the Ricoh
in the interim. !
Tim said he offer ACL a 3 year deal to play at the Ricoh but they refused. !
Steve Brown felt that if a 3 year deal was done that the new stadium wouldn’t
need to be built and that the 2 may be able to settle differences. He stated that
his opinion is that SISU want out.
Tim Fisher said Steve was right, but that the club needs assets to be able to sell. !
Both Kevin Heffernan and Steve Brown again called for mediation, suggesting John
Beech as a suitable candidate, although there was a fear that the opportunity for
mediation may already have passed. !
Steve Brown asked how many fans Tim Fisher and Dan Walker felt they would get
next season if we played outside the city. !
Dan Walker suggested 3000, to which the unanimous response came that there was
no chance. !
Steve Bennett asked about timescales on notifying the Football league on where
CCFC will play home matches next season. !
Tim said that the administrator will have received bids by 31.05.13 and then will
make decision on bids. Ultimately, the football league wants to fulfil the fixtures,
but the club are in total commercial limbo. They are owed about £1m by the
football league for various things such as prize money, player transfers,
appearance fees, all of which are withheld at present. The club is in financial hell
right now. !
Jim Brown asked whether the football league could award the ‘Golden Share’ to
one of the other bidders if they are successful in purchasing the CCFC Ltd. !
Tim replied that Yes, that was possible. !
Steve Brown asked what the commercial prospects were for the next 3 years. !
Tim felt if the club were successful then attendances (at a ground outside the city)
might be 6k, if unsuccessful it might be 2k. We have had to cash flow against those
numbers. In the championship revenue was £11m; it dropped to about £5.5m in
league 1. Last season the wage bill was about £4.25m, this year it will drop to
about £2m. In comparison, Clubs such as Wolves, Bournemouth and Swindon had
much higher wage bills. Whilst there is massive commercial uncertainty, Joy
Seppala is prepared to underwrite anything in the interim. Tim said that the major
impact will happen the season after next (2014/15) if we aren’t promoted. !
Dan Walker explained that he club had done a survey which was sent to 8,500
people, of which 3115 responded, and this is what they have based their
projections on. Again, most disagreed that with Tim and Dan’s attendance
projections and felt that the consensus amongst those groups they represented was
that most wouldn’t travel outside of Coventry to watch home matches. !
Kevin asked about the status of the Academy. !
Tim said that Peter Knatchbull-Hugessen had locked the academy out of the Alan
Higgs centre. The football league match fund the Academy. Currently it has
category 2 status, and that is based on the structure, people, experience, etc.
Category 3 is a centre of excellence. In Category 2 you play sides like Aston Villa,
Sheffield Wednesday. In Category 3 its Hinckley United. Administration may force
us back into Category 3. !
Kevin asked why we couldn’t move back and Tim reiterated that Peter Knatchbull-
Hugessen won’t allow it. !
Steve Brown called for Joy Seppala to face the fans and explain the situation and
search for a deal with ACL. !
Tim said that if a SISU subsidiary is successful in a bid to buy back CCFC Ltd and
reform the two companies again, that they will offer to talk to ACL. !
Kevin Heffernan formally requested that Joy Seppala meet with the SCG and other
Tim stated that he would ask her. !
Jim Brown asked Tim to explain his reasons behind called the Fans Forums. !
Tim replied that he wanted a chance for the fans to listen to him and form an
opinion based on that. !
Jim Brown stated that he understood the long term goal (the club owning its own
ground) but did not agree with the short term plans, and asked if Tim felt he could
turn it around in terms of fans perceptions. !
Tim stated that is isn’t a popularity contest and that he was prepared to do what it
takes for the club to survive. If the club reforms (SISU buy back CCFC Ltd) then
they would talk to ACL. But first, let’s get through administration. !
Meeting ended with no date set for the next meeting.