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Bradford Bulls takeover complete


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#121 Bulliac

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Posted 06 April 2014 - 09:26 AM

I think Bradford are fortunate in being based in a large city, which should afford sufficient support for a competitive club to be amongst the 'high flyers' of their division, but they would definitely be unfortunate in going down at this particular time in history.

 

The system of play-offs due to begin after the 2015 season, between full time SL clubs, honed by playing games againt their peers against largely part timers, with a much lower salary base and in a lower level competition, is specifically designed to retain the status quo, and definitely not to facilitate promotion/relegation in my opinion. Since the realistic possibility of P&R is likely to be effectively ended for the immedeiate future, the Bulls, along with all the olther clubs, will have to wait unti the RFL realises the nonsense they have created and bring back either straight P&R or a licensing system.


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#122 Exiled Wiganer

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Posted 06 April 2014 - 10:44 AM

Given how far the RFL has gone in saving Bradford from itself, it seems a bit rich to be sticking the boot in.

#123 Bulliac

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Posted 07 April 2014 - 10:24 AM

Given how far the RFL has gone in saving Bradford from itself, it seems a bit rich to be sticking the boot in.

This is the RFL who after Bradford, [let's not forget, a club which got into trouble because it had no money] got a new owner [I'm talking about Omah Khan] who was also far from a mega rich [he owns a couple of restaurants] came in as a 'white knight' rescuer and was then hit by the RFL telling him he wouldn't get the full funding like all the other clubs[in fact 'our' half of the Sky money was divvied up by the other clubs].

 

So, let's get it to basics: An owner comes in who was going to run it as a business but didn't have any real money to put in, is told he has to make do with half the competition money....and you call that Help? The club was financially crippled [by our "rescuers", the RFL, before a ball was kicked. Taking money from a club which doesn't have any, you couldn't make it up.


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#124 GIANTSTRIDES

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Posted 07 April 2014 - 02:32 PM

This is the RFL who after Bradford, [let's not forget, a club which got into trouble because it had no money] got a new owner [I'm talking about Omah Khan] who was also far from a mega rich [he owns a couple of restaurants] came in as a 'white knight' rescuer and was then hit by the RFL telling him he wouldn't get the full funding like all the other clubs[in fact 'our' half of the Sky money was divvied up by the other clubs].

 

So, let's get it to basics: An owner comes in who was going to run it as a business but didn't have any real money to put in, is told he has to make do with half the competition money....and you call that Help? The club was financially crippled [by our "rescuers", the RFL, before a ball was kicked. Taking money from a club which doesn't have any, you couldn't make it up.

 

What i find hard to understand is why so many fans seem to want to see the demise of the bulls ( I'm not suggesting EW by the way )  For me they would be a loss to SL, I know they are not at their best at the moment, but they have shown their capabilities, If i was the owner of a nearby club ,i would want them and their fans coming to my ground,

 

I can see the element of unfairness that other fans see in this, But when has life been fair, I still feel that Bradford ,one way or another will find a way to come through. +


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#125 Bulliac

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Posted 07 April 2014 - 03:12 PM

What i find hard to understand is why so many fans seem to want to see the demise of the bulls ( I'm not suggesting EW by the way )  For me they would be a loss to SL, I know they are not at their best at the moment, but they have shown their capabilities, If i was the owner of a nearby club ,i would want them and their fans coming to my ground,

 

I can see the element of unfairness that other fans see in this, But when has life been fair, I still feel that Bradford ,one way or another will find a way to come through. +

Well, the Bulls did have a fair go at being one of the top clubs and that does tend make you a target. Like most clubs, it's true to say the Bulls also had/have some fans who wind others up and have been, shall we say, a good bit less than gracious through the good times. That said, to be honest, I wouldn't take posts on boards as being totally representative of the general opinion of folk, especially where local rivalry is in the mix, as people often say things they don't really mean.


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#126 Adeybull

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 10:14 AM

For those who are interested, the report from the Administrator, outlining the background to what happened, the reasons, the amounts involved, his proposals etc is now available online from Companies House.  I have just downloaded it.

I suggest it should put a stop to a great deal of the nonsense and ill-informed speculation that has been circulating ad nauseum for a while now.  It reads to me as a clear, concise and well-written factual summary.  Whilst it does not extend to the final sale to BBN Ltd, I suspect its content will answer maybe 90% of the questions that have been raised.  Like just how much Khan put in, what happened to the employee TUPE, what Khan personally guaranteed, the role of Whitcut and much else.

I suggest for those who are interested in facts, not fantasy or fiction or speculation, it could be £1 well spent.

 



#127 brooza

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 11:18 AM

For those who are interested, the report from the Administrator, outlining the background to what happened, the reasons, the amounts involved, his proposals etc is now available online from Companies House.  I have just downloaded it.

I suggest it should put a stop to a great deal of the nonsense and ill-informed speculation that has been circulating ad nauseum for a while now.  It reads to me as a clear, concise and well-written factual summary.  Whilst it does not extend to the final sale to BBN Ltd, I suspect its content will answer maybe 90% of the questions that have been raised.  Like just how much Khan put in, what happened to the employee TUPE, what Khan personally guaranteed, the role of Whitcut and much else.

I suggest for those who are interested in facts, not fantasy or fiction or speculation, it could be £1 well spent.

Why spend £1 on facts when I can wildly speculate for free?


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#128 Adeybull

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 11:20 PM

Why spend £1 on facts when I can wildly speculate for free?

:biggrin: Absolutely!!

Must admit, across all the internet forums, it was pretty sickmaking to see how every man, his dog and his muppet seemed so delighted to pile into slating Bradford's long-suffering fans. When few knew Jack sheeite about what had really happened. In fact, the collective attitudes of so many of my fellow RL "fans" so sickened me off that I pretty well lost interest in contributing anything much on any forums.

Yet, when an objective acount of what REALLY happened is put in the public domain, across all the forums, virtually no-one gives a toss? Perhaps because it states objectively a few inconvenient truths? And, as you so rightly observe, why bother with the facts when wild speculation is far more fun?

Edited by Adeybull, 09 April 2014 - 05:03 AM.


#129 Adeybull

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Posted 09 April 2014 - 12:26 AM

OK, for those of you who can't be arsed spending £1, here are some key extracts from the report.


4. THE CIRCUMSTANCES GIVING RISE TO THE APPOINTMENT

Background lnformation
OK Bulls Limited ("the Company") ("OK Bulls") was Incorporated 30 August 2012 The company was formed as a vehicle to purchase the busmess and assets of Bradford Bulls Holdmgs Llmited which had proceeded mto Administration in June 2012
The company trades as a professional rugby league club and plays in the Super League at a top professional level. The club is located at Provident Stadium, Rooley Avenue, Bradford, BD6 1BS. Banking facilities were provided by Barclays Bank Pic, no overdraft facility or loans were available tothe company. The principal busmess is run through the company. However a wholly owned subsidiary Bradford Northern Rugby League Football Club (1964) Limited operates the lotteries in is own rght. The company derves its income from a number of sources, Rugby Football League ("RFL") Central Fundmg which comes pnimary from Sky Broadcasting for the televised events, game attendance, season ticket sales and sponsorship. When the club previously entered into Administration it was sold as a gomg concern to OK Bulls Limited. At the time of the purchase the only director of OK Bulls was Omar Khan. OK Bulls purchased the business and assets of Bradford Bulls Holdings Limited for £150,000, with an additional £100,000 payment due conditional upon the purchaser (OK Bulls) obtaining a franchise to participate in Super League 2015. Due to the changes in the structure of the Super League from 2014 onwards, no further franchise Will be granted and as a consequence this additional payment will no longer fall due.
In return for the granting of the Super League franchise to OK Bulls, as part of the purchase Mr Khan agreed to take a 50% reduction in the amount the company would receive from Central Funding for two seasons. The oniginal proposal by the RFL was that no central fundmg would be paid in season one of the new company, It was subsequently agreed that this would be spread over two seasons. This arrangement was to be supported by a personal guarantee from Mr Khan which would be called upon to repay central funding advances if the company failed again within that two year penod. At the time of the purchase the stadium was owned by Bradford City Council, with a lease to the RFL. The Company then took an assignment of that lease from Bradford Holdings Limited (sic). The council also made a loan of £200,000 to the company and as part of the agreement, Mr Khan provided a personal guarantee. Mr Khan went on to Inject approximately £400,000 ino the company, However despite thisl during 2013 the company started to expenence cash flow difficulties and recorded a significant loss in August 2013. In September 2013 Mr Khan resigned as a director due to health reasons. At lhis point Mr Khan appointed Ryan Whltcut as director, proposing that he would take control of the business on a day to day basis. In September 2013, Mr Whitcut Introduced Mark Moore and subsequently in October 2013, Andrew Calvert and Ian Watt Joined the company and all three were appointed directors and were brought in to assist with the running of the club.

The company was expenencing significant trading losses and in order to aid the cash flow problems, Ryan Whltcut approached Safeguard Secunty Group Llmited ("Safeguard") to request a short term loan to cover the salares of the club. The agreement was that the loan would be paid back within 6 weeks, and that Safeguard would take a debenture over the company, as secunty for the loan. It soon became apparent that Mr Whitcut was still in contact with Mr Khan and was approving payments that the other directors were not comfortable with and they felt the club couldn't afford to make. The new directors had also noted accounting irregularities and were not wiling to authonse further payments to be made without first bringing the accounts up to date. It also became apparent that there were significant liabilities that had not been initiuallyy revealed to the new directors including the Safeguard loan. The agreed six weeks past (sic) and no proposals of payment were made to Safeguard at this point.
Safeguard attempted to discuss the matter with the club and reach some agreement for repayment. An arrangement was reached for a staged repayment and a temporary reduction m the interest charges attached to the loan. On the basis of the findings in respect of the financial situation, Mr Whltcut was removed as director and his position at the club terminated. Continued efforts were made by the new directors to reduce the overheads and make Inroads into improving the cash flow. Overall reductions equating to £500,000 of annual overheads were made. However the company contmued to expenence significant losses and cash flow problems. Following a dispute between the new directors and the Mr Khan in relation to ownership of the club, all three directors resigned over Chnstmas. Subsequent negotiations between Chnstmas and New Year resulted m the reappointment of the Directors on the basis of commitments given in respect of ownership. However during the early part of January these commitments remained unfulfilled. Critically the club was getting close to the start of the new playing season and the financial and ownership position remained unresolved.

In mid-January, a winding up petition was issued by HMRC in relation to unpaid PAYE and NIC and served on the company, A petition that it was unable to pay. A decision was taken that the debenture holder was not able to allow this position to continue and was not prepared to allow the company to proceed into Compulsory Liquidation, with a likely result of a significant reduction in the value of the club and the assets covered by the debenture. Subsequently, Safeguard Secunty Group Limited therefore applied for an Admimstration Order as the holder of a qualifying floating charge and appointed David Wilson of DFW Associates as Administrator of the company in accordance with Paragraph 14.

The reasons for the company's Insolvency:
• Reduction in central funding agreed by the former director meant restrictins on cash flow
• Continued trading losses over an extended penod
• Accounting irregularities meant that the new directors were not aware of the exact trading losses
• Lack of available working capital

6. THE ADMINISTRATION PERIOD
Attached at appendiX 1 is an account of the receipts and payments from the commencement of Admimistration, 31 January 2014 to the date of th1s report. Prior to appointment it was apparent that the club only had a tangible value as long as it remained in the Super League. Following discussions with the RFL, it was clear that any purchaser would first need sanction from the RFL in order to trade as a member of the Super League. The only Interested party leading up to the Administration was the existing board who formed a new company Bradford Bulls 2014 Limited ("BB2014"). However, the Administrator has a duty to try and achieve the best result for all creditors. There were however no funds available to trade the company and therefore no extended marketing period could take place. In order to fulfil the Admmistrator's requirements, and also allow timee for the new company to obtain the reqUired sancion from the RFL, a conditional sale was agreed to BB2014 and they were to continue to trade on the basis of a licence for a per1od of one month whilst marketing took place. After that month it was intended the sale would complete, if no alternative purchaser was found.

BB2014 agreed that if a higher offer could be obtained to benefit the creditors that they would willingly step aside. BB2014 were making an offer for the purchase of the company's assets coupled with an Intended proposal to trade creditors of OK Bulls for repayment over an extended period in order to try and avoid the six point deduction that would be made due on the club entering into Administration. During this one month period other interested parties were invited to place bids to purchase the club. All Interested parties were given a final date for bidding and at that stage the highest bidder remained BB2014. On that basis the conditional contract was to complete, subject only to the approval of the RFL.

Over the next few days BB2014 had a number of meetmgs with the RFL to discuss cash flow projections and a busmess plan. However, on 24 February 2014 BB2014 advised the Administrator that they would be retracting their offer as an agreement could not be reached with the RFL. Trading reverted back to the company which has subsequently traded under the supervision of the Admmistrator since 25 February 2014, supported by funding from the RFL to cover any deficiency arising on trading and also all trading costs of the Administrator.
During this time the Administrator has worked with the RFL and other interested parties and attempted to provide as much information as possible in order for them to produce an Informed bid. Anyone wishmg to make a bid was asked to first speak to the RFL in order to meet their reqUirements in terms of a fit and proper person test, and to satisfy them in relation to proof of tunding. This was to ensure that once all bids were made, the Administrator was not faced w1th accepting the highest bid
and then for that bidder to not meet the reqUirements of the RFL.

The Admimstrator has a duty to ensure the best return to all creditors, however if the proposed purchaser does not meet the requirements of the RFL, as regards future sustainability of the business coupled with the required financial support then they would not receve a share in Super League. A closing date for all bids was given as 13 March 2014. At the time of writing, the highest bidder is in the process of reviewing and agreeing the sale contract, and completion of the sale is due to take
place before the end of March. Once completed full details of the sale will be provided to creditors.

Secured Creditor
Safeguard Secunty Group Limited hold security by way of a Debenture dated 30 September 2013 and registered 11 October 2013, granting a fixed and floating charge over the undertaking and all property and assets, present and future, including goodwill, book debts, uncalled capital, buildmgs, fixtures and fixed plant and machin ery. The amount outstanding at the date of appomtment was approximately £200,000. The loan IS subject to compound mterest at 8% a month so at the time of completion the debt is estimated to be £250,000.

Preferential Creditors

All employees were transferred under TUPE to BB2014 1n accordance w1th the conditional sale agreement. However, due to the non-completion of the sale, the employee's remain employed by OK Bulls Llmited- In Administration. Upon completion of a sale the employees includmg players will be transferred under TUPE and therefore no preferential claims will be made.

Unsecured Creditors

Unsecured creditors are estimated to total £1,136,854. The majrity of creditor claims have now been verified to statements. Mr Khan has indicated that his claim totals £1,058,920. However an examination of the company records including all bank transactions reveal that £401,658 has been invested by way of a cash against which at the present time repayments of £26,000 have been made. As part of the Administrator's investigations all transactions with "associated" parties will be reviewed
with specific regard to any funds withdrawn from the company which could be deemed to be a preference pursuant to section 239 and would be recoverable for the benefit of the creditors.

Edited by Adeybull, 09 April 2014 - 05:04 AM.


#130 a j cougar

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Posted 09 April 2014 - 06:56 AM

Thanks for that Adeybull

Re the 200 k council loan, s couple of questions you may or may not be able to answer:

Is this still outstanding and if so is it gone forever?

And who sanctioned the loan?

#131 Dave T

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Posted 09 April 2014 - 07:16 AM

Adeybull, your comments are actually disrespectful to all the fans of other clubs who actually dipped their hands in their pocket to donate to the Bulls when they were struggling.

Its posts like the above which make people wonder why they bothered.

#132 Adeybull

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Posted 09 April 2014 - 08:02 AM

Thanks for that Adeybull

Re the 200 k council loan, s couple of questions you may or may not be able to answer:

Is this still outstanding and if so is it gone forever?

And who sanctioned the loan?

 

Hi AJ.  As far as I can determine, the loan is included in the unsecured creditors value, and currently remains outstanding.  It was apparently personally guaranteed by Khan, who I saw reported in an interview a few days ago in the T&A saying that he intended to honour the guarantee and repay the loan.  I am sure we are both not alone in preparing to be very angry indeed if it was to transpire that the loan did not get repaid?  Any and all apoplexy from the good burghers of Keighley would be totally and completely justified IMO, in such an event.

 

The loan was granted very shortly after Khan and Sutcliffe took over the club.  As for who sanctioned it, it was supposedly the requisite council cabinet member/s and/or officials, IIRC from the reports.  Supposedly on commercial terms (I saw evidence last summer of the agreed and intended monthly repayment schedule, and of it being interest-bearing) as some sort of business development loan like the council granted to other businsesses. So it was reported, anyway... There have been any number of allegations that the loan was granted because of the presumed close relationship between Gerry Sutcliffe MP and the ruling labour group on the council, but I really have no idea.  We supporters generally did not become aware even of the existence of this loan until some months after they took over, when IIRC other local politicians understandably started making noises about it.  I was aware of Khan's guarantee some months ago, which was why I was less angry about this than various other things that had happened.

 

Doubtless your own chairman will be approaching the council for a similar loan?  And I'd say dead right too, if he did!



#133 Wolford6

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Posted 09 April 2014 - 08:18 AM

http://www.thetelegr...e_bank_/?ref=mr


Under Scrutiny by the Right-On Thought Police


#134 Adeybull

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Posted 09 April 2014 - 08:27 AM

Adeybull, your comments are actually disrespectful to all the fans of other clubs who actually dipped their hands in their pocket to donate to the Bulls when they were struggling.

Its posts like the above which make people wonder why they bothered.

 

They would be, if that was at whom they were aimed.  Those of whom anyway - I expect the vast majority - that refrained from subsequent nasty and vicious gloating and "kick the man while he is down" attacks on Bradford fans individually or collectively.  But any reasonable member of that group will correctly not expect or believe my observation to be aimed at them anyway, will they?

 

Unfortunately, a limited but (on internet forums and in the social media) loud and aggressive minority of supporters of other clubs - sadly including a number who stated they had contributed in 2012 - chose to vent their anger, gloating satisfaction, schadenfreude, "you reap what you sow", "serves you right" - whatever - at genuine Bradford supporters, collectively and individually.  And would just not listen to anyone trying to present anything remotely factual that did not suit their agendas.  A fair amount of all that went ad hominem, and it was quite clear that too many of such types were taking great delight in trying to upset Bradford supporters as much as they could.  This forum was far from immune, but effective moderation severely limited the extent of it.  Other forums were far less pleasant places to go, which is why I do not post there now. in my post, before I edited it, I made particular reference to RLFans, and especially the Virtual Terrace.  I don't do Facebook or Twitter, but I gather some of the stuff on there was very vicious and personal indeed.  I have never seen anything like this level of hatred at other fans being expressed, to be honest, and found it very disappointing and profoundly depressing.

 

It was of course at those individuals that my statement was directed.  And I make no apology for it. I suspect the large majority of right-thinking RL fans will have been surprised and uneasy at the extent of the vitriol being directed at the supporters, rather than at the various owners of the club and others who were the ones actually responsible.



#135 MrPosh

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Posted 09 April 2014 - 08:36 AM

Adeybull, your comments are actually disrespectful to all the fans of other clubs who actually dipped their hands in their pocket to donate to the Bulls when they were struggling.

Its posts like the above which make people wonder why they bothered.

 

I'm not sure they are. Adey's gratitude to fans of other clubs has been on record many times.

 

However, Bradford fans (mostly on the other place, but sometime on here) have been on the end of a torrent of abuse, lies and schadenfreude and we are, I think a little understandably, quite touchy at the moment.

 

I welcome this morning's news - it really feels like a step forwards - and I sincerely hope that we Bradford fans never get to repay the favour.


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#136 Dave T

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Posted 09 April 2014 - 08:37 AM

They would be, if that was at whom they were aimed.  Those of whom anyway - I expect the vast majority - that refrained from subsequent nasty and vicious gloating and "kick the man while he is down" attacks on Bradford fans individually or collectively.  But any reasonable member of that group will correctly not expect or believe my observation to be aimed at them anyway, will they?

 

Unfortunately, a limited but (on internet forums and in the social media) loud and aggressive minority of supporters of other clubs - sadly including a number who stated they had contributed in 2012 - chose to vent their anger, gloating satisfaction, schadenfreude, "you reap what you sow", "serves you right" - whatever - at genuine Bradford supporters, collectively and individually.  And would just not listen to anyone trying to present anything remotely factual that did not suit their agendas.  A fair amount of all that went ad hominem, and it was quite clear that too many of such types were taking great delight in trying to upset Bradford supporters as much as they could.  This forum was far from immune, but effective moderation severely limited the extent of it.  Other forums were far less pleasant places to go, which is why I do not post there now. in my post, before I edited it, I made particular reference to RLFans, and especially the Virtual Terrace.  I don't do Facebook or Twitter, but I gather some of the stuff on there was very vicious and personal indeed.  I have never seen anything like this level of hatred at other fans being expressed, to be honest, and found it very disappointing and profoundly depressing.

 

It was of course at those individuals that my statement was directed.  And I make no apology for it. I suspect the large majority of right-thinking RL fans will have been surprised and uneasy at the extent of the vitriol being directed at the supporters, rather than at the various owners of the club and others who were the ones actually responsible.

Your quote was quite clear that you were referring to every 'man, his dog and his muppet' across all internet forums.



#137 Dave T

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Posted 09 April 2014 - 08:42 AM

I'm not sure they are. Adey's gratitude to fans of other clubs has been on record many times.

 

However, Bradford fans (mostly on the other place, but sometime on here) have been on the end of a torrent of abuse, lies and schadenfreude and we are, I think a little understandably, quite touchy at the moment.

 

I welcome this morning's news - it really feels like a step forwards - and I sincerely hope that we Bradford fans never get to repay the favour.

Well Adey's quote (the way he worded it) was extremely over the top and tarred us all with the same brush - he may not have meant it like that, although he is standing by his quote - and if that is how people feel then it is disappointing.

 

In terms of attacks from others, unfortunately that will always happen, I haven't seen too much personal stuff tbh, some completely disagree with how the situation has been handled and they have said so and I think there has generally been some good debate around it on here - I steer clear from the other place and have done for a while now apart from the odd venture when there is a rumour doing the rounds. Nobody should be shocked by anything from that site these days!

 

Anyway, good luck for the future, onwards and upwards.



#138 MrPosh

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Posted 09 April 2014 - 08:55 AM

Well Adey's quote (the way he worded it) was extremely over the top and tarred us all with the same brush - he may not have meant it like that, although he is standing by his quote - and if that is how people feel then it is disappointing.

 

In terms of attacks from others, unfortunately that will always happen, I haven't seen too much personal stuff tbh, some completely disagree with how the situation has been handled and they have said so and I think there has generally been some good debate around it on here - I steer clear from the other place and have done for a while now apart from the odd venture when there is a rumour doing the rounds. Nobody should be shocked by anything from that site these days!

 

Anyway, good luck for the future, onwards and upwards.

 

Thanks, Dave.

 

This board has, generally, been supportive of the situation - or, if not, constructively critical of it. That is why I come here.

 

However, in a situation like this, the support of your own team's fans has been nice and the other place has come into its own - however, that comes with a large set of idiots (I see Gutterfax has made it over here - my ignore list is very long) who have been collectively very unpleasant. It has created a real siege mentality for some fans.

 

Anyway, as you say, onwards and upwards. I even have a glimmer of optimism this morning.


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#139 Adeybull

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Posted 09 April 2014 - 09:03 AM

Your quote was quite clear that you were referring to every 'man, his dog and his muppet' across all internet forums.

 

If it makes you happy to pounce on imprecise wording, then fine.  I doubt most reasoned readers, especially those who are familiar with what I have posted on internet forums these last 15 years, would choose to interpret my statement as you did.  But my earlier clarification should address any such concerns.



#140 Rob

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Posted 09 April 2014 - 09:31 AM

So if the Bulls currently owe Safeguard £250,000 and rising at a rate of 8% per month (is that 233% APR?) then the Bulls will pay £20,000 interest only to SafeGuard, EACH month.

 

If the Bulls don't pay any of the loan off then by this time next year the debt to Safeguard will be nearer to £600,000 and the Bulls will be paying £45,000 interest per month.

 

Looks like the Bulls need to pay the loan off to the Safeguard Security Group asap to stop lining the pockets of the Safeguard Security group.

 

Unless there's anyone at the Bulls with a vested interest in Safeguard?

 

Do I also understand that as a secured creditor, when central funding arrives, the directors of the Bulls could direct the cash immediately towards the secured creditors, rather than the preferential or the unsecured creditors?

 

Frightening.  Truly frightening.  Unless I'm misunderstanding the situation.