Newcastle Supporters Trust Wants To Buy The Club


The Newcastle United Supporters Trust (NUST) has been set up to promote the Yes We Can campaign and will presumably hope to have a role in the future running of the club, once it is sold.

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Self-Invested Personal Pensions (SIPP) are backing the initiative, which takes advantage of Government legislation allowing people to invest part of their pension into business projects.

They have been working with a team of financial advisers across the region, who have so far secured pledges worth more than £24m from their clients, and since the money is taken form people’s pensions, it will not be missed, well not yet anyway.

Neil Mitchell, the interim chair of the Trust, said today:

“Today’s launch sets out an agenda to include the fans on the inside track of their club.”

“The overriding aim of the Trust is to buy into the club to make sure supporters have a voice in the corridors of power and the current situation at St James’ shows how vital that is.”

“The Yes We Can campaign shows that there is serious interest out there.”

SIPP allows people to choose what they invest in, and by agreeing to invest say £20K, the HM Revenue and Customs gives them £5K in tax relief.

The aim of the trust aim is to sell as many as 8,000 stakes in the club and to raise abut £200M in cash to buy out Ashley and have a fund for running costs and transfers.

Stakeholders can withdraw their investment at any time, and supporters can also invest in NUST, with money other than pension funds.

The club would have eight elected directors, with each stakeholder having a vote. There would also be seven supporters’ representatives, and of course this is the way both Barcelona and Real Madrid are run.

Colin Whittle, of the Trust, said today:

“We want the club to be part of the community again and we want the fans to lead the way in reforming our club and turning it into the a shining example of how the city, businesses and its people can rally around and create a club we can all be proud of.”

” The Trust is made up of ordinary fans from the city, across the country and abroad and we now have thousands of members.”

We think this will be very hard to pull off, at least buying the club outright, and if the club is sold to Barry Moat for instance, how will he look on the NUST?

Maybe the trust could give say £20M to Moat to help the club buy players, and then be rewarded with a seat on the board.

That seems a decent way of getting supporters involved in the upper reaches of the club, but then the representative from NUSC would need to be strong and professional on the board, for it all to work.

With opportunity comes responsibility.

What do you think of all of this?

Comments welcome.



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22 comments so far

  • Bigbadbob

    Oct 7, 2009 at 3:25 PM

    Comment #1

    Steady on lads, investing your future pension in a football club, you must be crackers.

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  • Spitfire

    Oct 7, 2009 at 3:26 PM

    Comment #2

    Yawn………..wake me up when its all over will you? I’m not gonna set my alarm.

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  • DJG

    Oct 7, 2009 at 3:35 PM

    Comment #3

    Bigbadbob // Oct 7, 2009 at 3:25 PM

    Might aswell considering what private pensions seem to be worth these days 🙂

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  • Pons Aelius

    Oct 7, 2009 at 3:40 PM

    Comment #4

    Hmmm. Although a one-off investment is something I would consider, a pension plan based on the security of Newcastle United’s finances? Errrrr… No thanks

    I love my club by I’m not going to gamble my pension on the Toon!

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  • tdt

    Oct 7, 2009 at 3:43 PM

    Comment #5

    its a stable investment in comparison to the companies that these pension schemes normally play with. the only way the person putting the money in would loss is if the club is worth less than it is now when they retire. what is the likelihood of that? slim.

    Why do they need £200 million? The club is for sale at £100 million, as it is a Ltd company it doesnt matter what the market value is, it MA is offering it at £100 million then that it the value.

    If they cannot get the money to buy it, they should bargain with moat to have 50/50. Then its all good for everyone, they will be more money available than moat himself, and the fans have a say.

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  • Stuart79

    Oct 7, 2009 at 3:47 PM

    Comment #6

    Ridiculous!

    Let someone with some money buy the club and take us forward.

    What happens when we need £10m for a new player and all their money has ran out?

    Ridiculous idea imo.

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  • Nick D

    Oct 7, 2009 at 4:14 PM

    Comment #7

    I think it’s a great idea, if ran on the same lines as Barcelona and Madrid,where unions are heavily involved. It’s not a crazy idea, it just needs to get started and snowball from there.

    The 2 Spanish giants can afford the best players in the world, so it obviously can work. It works in Germany and Italy as well.

    It just takes a lot of negative people for it not to succeed, but once up and running, people will wonder why they didn’t do it years ago. The tax relief bit is very clever too and if viewed in the long term could be a really sound investment.

    Everyone is accountable in these schemes where reports are made on a regular basis. I thi nk it would be superb if the Toon became the first English super club owned by the people for the people.

    Yes the Stuarts of this world will throw their hands up in horror at such an idea, but with 24M already pledged, it’s gathering pace and can you imagien how good it would feel to be independent of the Ashleys et al.

    Some geordies are notoriously narrow minded, but why knock these people for trying to do something positive for their club.

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  • Stuart79

    Oct 7, 2009 at 4:36 PM

    Comment #8

    Nick D // Oct 7, 2009 at 4:14 PM

    To be independant of these meglomaniacs a club needs to be in the Champions League to finance itself and sustain the challange for honours.

    To get into the Champions League in this day and age you need a meglamaniac owner.

    Sorry but we need someone with deep pockets to achieve our ambitions this day and age.

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  • punk skunk...

    Oct 7, 2009 at 4:44 PM

    Comment #9

    Aren’t real madrid hocked to the eyes with the banks?..To the tune of several 100m…Ouch!..
    Barca works tho’!..

    …But anyway, y’right…Too many pessimists roond here like!..

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  • Nick D

    Oct 7, 2009 at 4:49 PM

    Comment #10

    They are talking about 8000 people at £20K each, but you don’t have to put in that much.
    You can pledge a much smaller amount and just become part of the trust.

    Barca have 155,000 fans paying 150 euros a season and getting all kinds of benefits from the merchandising etc.

    Yes I thought it was dodgy at first but if you read a bit more about them, you might think again.

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  • Ross

    Oct 7, 2009 at 5:09 PM

    Comment #11

    Dont like the idea, i definitly couldnt see it working. Let someone with cash and good intentions buy the club, with him bringing in staff who know exactly what they’re doing! Imagine if this went wrong, we’d be an even bigger laughing stock than we already have been for god knows how long, especially if the ownership issue went t!ts up, after Ashley had left.

    Also, (i’ve been saying this for a while & i’m not directing this at Nick D personally btw!!)..we cant really compare ourselves with the likes of Barcelona. If its 150 Euro’s the pay…they do so to see their team most probably win LaLiga, every Spanish domestic cup, along with a strong chance of winning the greatest club competition in the world, the Champions League. I’d also be dubious as to whether 155,000 people would be willing to immediatly stump up the cash aswell..meaning if the number was smaller, it would cost more…for potentially, nothing much in return from the team?

    Not trying to put a downer on the whole situation like, just trying to be realistic.

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  • OHurley

    Oct 7, 2009 at 5:45 PM

    Comment #12

    Stuart-

    That’s utter tosh. Sounds like you’re a leftover from the old school monarchical days. Ya know, two thirds of early Americans (prior to the Revolution) thought that having a country run by its people was the most ridiculous thing they’d ever heard. Well, here we are now leading the free world. SO- seems to me like having a club based in the community with thousands of investors world wide is a pretty good idea. Especially when the snowball gets rolling. I don’t think you need one rich b@stard to fund the whole thing. I think with MANY people funding it, you’ll attain the same result. Also- I like the idea of making a hybrid right now. Have a representative from the NUST on the board of directors with Moat owning the club. That’s a great idea. Ashame there’s too many pessimists around to make this fully work (Stuart, Stardust, and company).

    Also, Stuart- I wanna say that always enjoy reading your football related posts, m8. You’re a clever guy and you know your footy. Nothing but respect, despite disagreement on this subject.

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  • dave 1961

    Oct 7, 2009 at 5:45 PM

    Comment #13

    at least they are trying to achieve something. they don’t just sit on their buts and moan, so good luck to them. remember the magpie group, the flotation that was a flop, then when shepherd & the halls made a killing, & everyone moaned about the cash they made. i got my money back from the flotation, but if i had not and it went ahead, maybe Ashley would never have happened.

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  • Thump

    Oct 7, 2009 at 5:45 PM

    Comment #14

    @Ross: Exactly, mate. It isn’t that we couldn’t, though – it’s that it just wouldn’t work. This isn’t an ideal world and the fans would run the club into the ground.

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  • Nick D

    Oct 7, 2009 at 5:47 PM

    Comment #15

    Ross

    I would say worldwide, we probably have way more than 155000 supporters and it’s chicken and egg , catch 22 or whatever you want to call it.

    Do you never try something because it may fail. We haven’t exactly covered ourselves in glory the last 50 years – trophies won – ZILCHO

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  • AndyNUFC

    Oct 7, 2009 at 5:54 PM

    Comment #16

    The only way I see it, if a club like Portsmouth can taken over twice in a month, we still have hope yet.

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  • Stuart79

    Oct 7, 2009 at 5:55 PM

    Comment #17

    OHurley // Oct 7, 2009 at 5:45 PM

    Also, Stuart- I wanna say that always enjoy reading your football related posts, m8. You’re a clever guy and you know your footy. Nothing but respect, despite disagreement on this subject.

    I have to say I totally and utterly agree with you.

    lol

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  • Paul141726

    Oct 8, 2009 at 1:15 AM

    Comment #18

    Could this work?-sure. But will it? I’m not sure. I think an undertaking of this size needs people of character, tough but fair business types (not from the Ashley mold) who can run the money side of an operation, football people who can put ALL of their effort to creating a club to rival any in the world, and supporters (members of the trust or not) who will let their feelings be known as to what they want to see from their club and not throw the toys out the pram at the first disagreement they have with the decision makers. These are minimum requirements for this plan to work. I’m scepticle but intrigued at the same time.

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  • Solaidback

    Oct 8, 2009 at 8:19 AM

    Comment #19

    So let me get this right, you have 8000 people pledging 20k each, that only makes 1.6m, so where does the other 198.4m come from???

    Also, these 8000 people take 20k out of there pension & get what in return? a share in the TOON with no return for there investment??

    I’m a massive fan but I don’t understand the logistics of this, even though it would be a good idea if it ever came off that is 🙂

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  • bettyswollocks

    Oct 8, 2009 at 8:24 AM

    Comment #20

    Why do people get so hung up on getting a new owner with deep pockets? Personally I have no desire to go from one billionaires play thing to another’s. NUFC can be successful in its own merits if ran properly – there’s no reason why we can’t self generate enough money to compete in the top half of the PL – we just need to be ran like a proper club for once from the top down.

    This club is special. No matter what cr*p is thrown at us I am always proud to be part of the club – always having a sense of belonging. Despite relegation I’ve enjoyed this season far more than any since SBR. For me Man City and the rest can stick their billionaire owners and new legions of plastic fans. If this has even the slimmest chance of working then I say why not??

    I’d get much more satisfaction from being part of a moderately successful premier league club there on merit – rather than the size of the owner’s wallet. Chelsea ceased to be a proper club a long time ago and now Man City are selling their soul. They can have their champions league – personally I’d rather just have what is rightfully ours – NUFC

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  • bettyswollocks

    Oct 8, 2009 at 8:25 AM

    Comment #21

    solaidback – get your calculator out again mate

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  • Nick D

    Oct 8, 2009 at 8:36 AM

    Comment #22

    Solaidback

    Did / do they teach you maths at school?

    You get an annual dividend payment.

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