Keep it out of sight
Keep it out of sight
Undercover of the night
My preface is an excerpt from a well known composition by Keith Richards & Mick Jagger. It succinctly sums up the rationale for the Friday evening publication of RIFC’s accounts to 30 June 2017. The rogue board and the squatters at Auchenhowie are attempting to blindside the business press who would hang these accounts out to dry. They know that the Lite fans with laptops in the SMSM don’t have the intellectual capacity to read an annual report. However the hapless hacks should be able to discern that these accounts were signed off by King and the auditors on the 26th October, yet they were not released until a Friday evening eight days later. A cynic might suggest that the rogue board are trying to bury bad news
Will Lord Bannatyne, as he sits down to Eggs Benedict this morning at his Morningside pile, be caught mid-mouthful by an article in the Scotsman? Will he note that NOAL, which is an anagram of LOAN, will advance an emergency quantum of £4m to keep the lights on at Ibrox? With his forensic mind will he add this sum to the £2.8m already advanced by NOAL and the subtotal to the promissory note for an additional £3.2m and arrive at a NOAL grand total of £10m? Will it occur to him that Mr King, whose counsel fallaciousaly claimed was ‘Penniless‘ could get his greedy grasping hands on a sum sufficient to comply with the Takeover Panel’s edict? Will it occur to him that the former Lord Advocate of Scotland, Baron Davidson of Glen Clova, was lying through his back teeth? If Lord Bannatyne read my article that I published yesterday and Mr Whitehouse’s withering assessment of Jim Keegan, might he form the opinion that Davidson is just another rogue QC from the bottom of the advocates’ barrel? I would be surprised if his Lordship had not read my blog as I am reliably informed by my bewigged learned friend that it was the hot topic in chambers.
If Lord Bannatyne is as astute as I’m led to believe by My East Coast Legal Eagle, and he is not unduly influenced by those who ‘swing the lead‘ he will inexorably arrive at the conclusion that King must comply with the Takeover Panel edicts.
King, safely ensconced in his Johannesburg digs, will do no such thing. Ladina, who has converted the basement (which at one time held 28,000 bottles of boosted wine) into a dance studio, will invite King to get down and dirty to a Jane Fonda workout to ease the onerous burden of his grand opening of his cheque book. One wonders whether NOAL’s quantum is residing in a Yellow Sea tax haven not far from the city made famous by Jane’s impromptu visit during the Vietnam War; and by a prison that made Guantanamo Bay resemble a Butlin’s holiday camp. Is NOAL’s treasure chest being looked after by Messrs Scott and Ross? Which begs the questione of how it was siphoned out of South Africa? Perhaps The Serious Fraud Office, who are the real deal and not the bare-nippled huns of Police Scotland lore, will chap King’s door after they have dealt with the odious money-laundering Gupta family. King is so bent that he could pass as an Indian businessman.
Prior to a look at the accounts I take pause to chuckle at the brass neck of King who gave Sir Bribe & Lie £20m to hide from the South African Revenue Service and duly received a £15m ‘dividend’ with SB&L trousering £5m. This was money laundering in the raw but narurally passed unnoticed by the Lodge Luddites who were hopping around with blindfolds at the time. King now wants a return of 3.91p per bent pound. One would need a face painter to colour me surprised should the small stakeholders not rip new ones in the joint liquidators if they give a backhander to King on BDO’s next visit to the Argyle Suite.
In any report signed off by King it’s best to ignore his foreword farrago of lies and proceed directly to the Auditor’s Report and the following gem:
EMPHASIS OF MATTER – GOING CONCERN
We draw attention to note 1 to the financial statements concerning the Group’s ability to continue as a going concern. In order to continue operations for the next 12 months the Group is dependent upon raising additional finance to cover the projected cash shortfall of £4m in season 2017/18 and a further £3.2m in season 2018/19. Failure to secure additional funding would result in the existence of a material uncertainty which may cast significant doubt as to the Group’s ability to continue as a going concern. The financial statements do not include the adjustments that would result if the Group was unable to continue as a going concern. Our opinion is not modified in respect of this matter.
The material uncertainty of relying on loans from a Chairman who will soon be subject to a Cold Shoulder order should ring alarm bells at Ibrox. The Takeover Panel will not accept that NOAL is providing loans at arm’s length to King. They did not come down in the last shower. Receiving loans from the disgraced chairman will throw a huge spanner in the works. Don’t be surprised if Metro Bank walks away and the players are paid by cash in brown envelopes.
Which leads to my next point. Does King honestly believe that he can find a NOMAD and an exchange to accept a company relying on loans from a Cold Shouldered Chairman? It’s just not going to happen. Not in 2018. Not as long as the disgraced chairman is cutting cheques at NOAL to keep the lights on.
It’s also interesting to note that the accounts don’t include the compensation due to Caixinha and his team and I’m led to believe the acquisition of Dorrans. There won’t be much change out of a £1m for addressing the former. Jim Delahunt and Chris Sutton were evidently taking the proverbial when they claimed that this beleaguered club had the wherewithal to buy out McInnes’ contract. How does their idle speculation square with a £4m emergency quantum?
This company is listing under the weight of £15.9m of loans and other than the ludicrous valuations of Ibrox and Murray Park would be technically trading whilst insolvent. Their operating expenses increased by £7.1m from the comparative figure in 2016 to £31.3m. The Operating Loss of £6.7m for the year was more than double the losses incurred in 2016.
How the rogue board can assert with a straight face that they are close to breaking even truly beggars belief. What part of a £6.7m loss do they not understand?
Is it any wonder they slipped this out under the cover of the night. In layman’s terms that even the Gullibillies could understand they cannot afford McInnes or any other manager in serious employ and will have to make do with Murty and his fractured squad.
£7.2m in loans will not be sufficient to keep this charabang on the road. This figure is predicated on unrealistic assumptions.
King has the audacity to talk about Lite regaining their dominance in Scottish football. Are they planning to drop back down to the second tier?