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Club Chiefs Reflect on AGM

6 March 2018

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Spireites chiefs have reflected on last night's AGM, which saw a number of topics being discussed.

Over 200 shareholders were in attendance in the SBK Computers Spires Restaurant, with some taking the opportunity to pose questions to the board of directors and manager Jack Lester.

Reflecting on the evening, chairman Mike Warner said: “I think it roughly went how I thought it would go. Passions and tensions are high, but it didn’t get out of hand.

“I certainly understand supporters’ frustrations, because they’re the same frustrations that I’ve got. I’ve certainly attempted to address those concerns.”

Director and company secretary Ashley Carson added: “Overall it went okay. I think by and large we were able to answer the questions that were asked of us and we all gave honest answers.”

One of the main talking points was the club’s accounts and the directors admitted that the finances remain a source of great concern.

“There is money coming in from the sale of players, but it is going into the running of the football club,” Carson said.

“On an annual basis we’re about a million pounds short, each year, so that’s the immediate bit that is plugged.

“If you work on the amount of money that we should have been spending on players - certainly over the last three or four years - we’re spending more than we should do and we’re plugging that gap all of the time.

“And that’s something that we have to hold our hand up on and say that we’ve lived beyond our means.

“We got relegated last year and we knew that revenue was going to be down. Everything was going to be reduced in League Two, but Dave (Allen) said that we’ll continue fund it and give it a go and bounce straight back.

“That’s why it’s been like it has. We’re third in the league table in terms of how much we’ve spent on players, but we’ve had 11 players come and there’s costs been involved in that.”

Another talking point was speculation concerning a potential takeover of the club. Carson confirmed that owner Dave Allen has been actively looking to sell the club and that a deal has been agreed with an un-named consortium.

He said: “Dave has shaken hands with the principals concerned. A deal has been struck to mutual satisfaction.

“A payment schedule for this has been agreed and the lawyers have been informed, so everybody is standing by to go.

“I’m told that it should be seven to 14 days in terms of the transferring of the shares. They’ve had the management accounts and they’ve taken a look at everything.

“Their advisers have taken them back to London and have commented that they are the best management accounts that they’ve seen in a football club, but I’d say that no deal is done until the ink is dry and more importantly the money is in the bank.”

Speaking about a previous proposed takeover, Carson commented: “We had a very good meeting right from the off with the people involved. A couple of letters went back and forth over the period of a month and everything was agreed.

“The deal was not exactly what Dave wanted but he was prepared to go with it. Unfortunately, the funds weren’t forthcoming. We did ask for a non-refundable deposit, by which that if anything had been uncovered in due diligence they’d have got their money back.”

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