Society Statement on Community Ownership

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Re: Society Statement on Community Ownership

Post by OliverH on Wed Jan 21, 2015 10:41 am

Point taken, Roman Mike - personally, I am gravitating towards using the existing Society as the vehicle for any community share offer, subject to advice from Supporters Direct and the Community Shares Unit which we hope to receive this week. My initial research suggests that the Society's constitution is properly set up for this - again, seeking advice.

Regarding Eddie's question about how this would affect existing Society members - at the moment, 150-odd Society members have democratic control over 17.56% of the Club's shareholding on a one member, one vote basis.

If we conducted a community share offer using the Society as the vehicle (and the other shareholders agreed to sell), all of the people buying the community shares would become members of the Society and would also have a vote. So you might have, say, 1500 people with democratic control of 100%, or near 100% of the Club. It depends on how many people buy the community shares.

If by "value of investment" you mean financial value, then I'll have to get back to you on that later this week. I've personally contributed to the Society on the understanding that my contributions are non-refundable and non-withdrawable, and have no financial value to me as an individual as such, just financial value to the Society as a whole of which I am a member. But let me check the fine print.

Oliver Holtaway - Secretary, Supporters Society / Member of Community Ownership Action Group
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Re: Society Statement on Community Ownership

Post by comrade powell on Thu Jan 22, 2015 11:06 am

another article in today's Chronicle...

http://www.bathchronicle.co.uk/Rallying-support-community-ownership-Bath-City-FC/story-25900141-detail/story.html

Martin Powell - Chair, Supporters Society / Member of Community Ownership Action Group
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Re: Society Statement on Community Ownership

Post by Luton Roman on Thu Jan 22, 2015 7:28 pm

Good to see the politicans backing it, anyone would think there is an election imminent.....get them committed while they're still listening.

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Re: Society Statement on Community Ownership

Post by Marc Monitor on Thu Jan 22, 2015 7:57 pm

To be fair, Steve Bradley has been front and centre in this all the way through.
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Re: Society Statement on Community Ownership

Post by Marc Monitor on Mon Jan 26, 2015 5:16 pm

Can't be there tonight due to a long standing appointment with the posh ballet as opposed to the people's ballet. Have a good one, ask questions, get answers, debate and start to dream. It would be a very long journey but, at least, there is a start
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Re: Society Statement on Community Ownership

Post by Ashley on Mon Jan 26, 2015 10:49 pm

A fascinating evening, thanks to the team that organised it.
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Re: Society Statement on Community Ownership

Post by OliverH on Tue Jan 27, 2015 12:27 am

Many thanks Ashley, we will get a report of the evening posted ASAP for those who couldn't make it. Bath City Internet Radio will also be running an interview with some of the action group this Saturday, I understand.

We were asked some searching questions, but the overall tone was definitely constructive and we are very grateful for the feedback and offers of support. Around 90-100 people attended, I think is fair to say, thanks so much to everyone who came down.

There is still a huge amount of work to be done. There was a form on everyone's chair asking what time, skills or expertise they might have to give to a community ownership bid. I'd ask again here for anyone to post below or PM me any contribution they can make. We can do this.
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Re: Society Statement on Community Ownership

Post by Dusty Lynfield on Tue Jan 27, 2015 7:39 am

Thank you to Oliver and the rest of the action group. I was impressed with how much thought and research has already gone into the "bid". I've got a few thoughts that I will put in a PM to you re how best to sell the Community shares and am happy to volunteer what time I can. At the end of this process, I think we all need to say that we gave this 100%, if we don't I hate to think what could happen.
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Re: Society Statement on Community Ownership

Post by OliverH on Tue Jan 27, 2015 8:06 am

Many thanks Dusty, I look forward to receiving your PM!
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Re: Society Statement on Community Ownership

Post by pete mac on Tue Jan 27, 2015 8:19 am

That's a great turnout. Really encouraging.

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Re: Society Statement on Community Ownership

Post by comrade powell on Tue Jan 27, 2015 9:48 am

Although I am hopeless at fixing the size of attendances, I'm confident there were around 120 there last night. A really encouraging turn out, not just from City fans but also other members of the community. Many thanks to all who made the effort to come - it has strengthened our resolve to help our club.
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Re: Society Statement on Community Ownership

Post by SteveBradley on Tue Jan 27, 2015 10:26 am

comrade powell wrote:Although I am hopeless at fixing the size of attendances, I'm confident there were around 120 there last night. A really encouraging turn out, not just from City fans but also other members of the community. Many thanks to all who made the effort to come - it has strengthened our resolve to help our club.

Phil said he counted everyone and there were 120.

A great session, and a really positive atmosphere. Great to see. Though now the hard work continues.

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Re: Society Statement on Community Ownership

Post by Eddie Hitler on Tue Jan 27, 2015 6:25 pm

Really positive night. Thanks to Steve for jumping quickly on the anti-Council sentiments. As a Council employee, I was on the verge of becoming quite offended by that first speaker and his nonsensical conspiracy theories. We need to work with the Council and we don't need to alienate fellow supporters just because they work for the Council.
For my part, the point raised about helping us individuals in approaching businesses (maybe our own employer) was really valid. I make lots of contacts but wouldn't know where to start in encouraging them to take an interest. Some form of wording, or even an info pack of some sort would be invaluable.
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Re: Society Statement on Community Ownership

Post by comrade powell on Tue Jan 27, 2015 6:29 pm

That's a good point, Eddie, which we will follow up.
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Re: Society Statement on Community Ownership

Post by Marc Monitor on Tue Jan 27, 2015 6:40 pm

Great turn-out for a first meeting. Onward to February 9th!
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Re: Society Statement on Community Ownership

Post by Major Icewater on Tue Jan 27, 2015 8:34 pm

I do not think the guy was having a moan at the individuals who work for the council but more the politicians who make the decisions that employees have to implement.

With regard to the meeting the one thing that the speakers did not address is what happens to the existing shares that are not owned by existing directors or in the Society envelope. Would these have to be bought out if the community project goes ahead.

I know this was a question aired, previously, but there has never been a clear response provided.

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Re: Society Statement on Community Ownership

Post by OliverH on Wed Jan 28, 2015 1:28 am

Regarding the issue of minority shareholders - first of all, it is our intention that no shareholders will be sidelined or disenfranchised by any new community ownership structure.

So far, our research leads us to understand that a successful community share offer (made by the Society or a new entity) would have to end up with a controlling stake in Bath City FC Ltd, i.e. at least 75%. Otherwise, it might not be able to honour the promises made to investors in the community share offer, because the minority shareholders could block it.

The combined shareholding of the existing directors and the Society comes to about 65% of the total shareholding of Bath City FC Ltd.

So yes, we would need to purchase shares from at least some of the minority shareholders as well as the directors, or (if possible, still confirming) have some of them transfer their shares into the Society/new entity in return for an equivalent amount of community shares. At least one minority shareholder has already offered to do this.

For the community share offer to qualify for Enterprise Investment Scheme tax relief of 30%, however, the Society/new entity would have to own 90% of Bath City FC Ltd.

It would be very helpful if minority shareholders were to contact us at bathcitycommunity@gmail.com to give us their thoughts on this.

Oliver Holtaway, Secretary of Supporters Society, member of Community Ownership Action Group
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Re: Society Statement on Community Ownership

Post by Dodgycarpet on Wed Jan 28, 2015 2:00 am

I like being a shareholder in my own right (and in favour of community run clubs). Need to catch up with the facts when I am back in 2 weeks; good work by all those involved and thanks!

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Re: Society Statement on Community Ownership

Post by OliverH on Wed Jan 28, 2015 10:05 am

Here is a helpful animation produced by the Community Shares Unit explaining the basics of community shares:

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