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Trust Meeting with Rob Couhig

edited November 3 in Football

Copied directly from the email to trust members:

Wycombe Wanderers Supporters Group Limited (operating as Wycombe Wanderers Trust) have reached an agreement with Rob Couhig, chairman and chief executive of Wycombe Wanderers Football Club and principal owner of Feliciana EFL Ltd, which the two parties believe is the next logical step to enable a series of exciting developments for the football club.

Rob Couhig and his senior leadership team remain fully committed to fulfilling the club’s ambitions of achieving Championship football, financial sustainability and improved facilities at both its Adams Park home and Marlow Road training base.

Underpinning these plans is the need to continuously improve revenue streams into the club through a wide-ranging series of developments, including the enhanced access to and from the stadium via a new road from the upper car park, which will in turn enable the club to increase the capacity of the stadium. Works are planned to redevelop the home terrace and north (Origin) stand (including new hospitality areas), improve facilities for disabled supporters, renovate the public toilets and kiosks and construct enhanced car parking facilities. These will also facilitate any potential increase in capacity.

In order to be able to finance these projects, we are proposing to amend the operating model between the Club and the Trust. Both the football Club and Trust recognise that competing on the pitch within the constraints of its current model, against clubs whose attendances and revenue streams are four or five times that of Wycombe’s, would produce a continual need for cash calls from the Trust, in turn draining the Trust of its financial resources.

In order to fully explain the details of this, Rob Couhig and the Trust will be holding a meeting for Trust members on November 9th in the Caledonian suite, starting at 7pm. The proposals detailed in that meeting will be put to a members vote at the end of the meeting, to ensure that we have your backing for the future plans.  

This new model will allow the club to continue to make the necessary improvements to enhance its revenue streams and build on the fantastic progress that has been made with its commercial, media, ticketing and retail projects in recent times, as well as boosting the team’s chances of returning to the Championship, and further strengthening its excellent development squad programme for young players. It will also make it possible to further develop the stadium into one fit for the Championship.

Wycombe Wanderers Football Club and Wycombe Wanderers Trust share the view that the best days for the club, on and off the pitch, are ahead of us, and thank its supporters – particularly members of the Trust – for their sustained support and dedication to the club.

All Trust members are invited to attend the meeting but you will also be able to take part via Zoom. The meeting will start at 7 pm and will include a Q&A session to answer any queries members may have.

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Comments

  • I like, I hope, ALL Trust members will be attending in person or on Zoom in order to participate in this discussion & vote

  • It's a little bit of a shame we don't know the thrust of it up front, as what sounds like a very key decision will have to be voted on with minimal time to process or debate the proposal.

  • edited November 3

    Suspect it will be a gun to the head job. Rob wants to invest in improvements to the ground, access etc but the Trust haven't the funds to contribute their 20%. Rob wants full ownership or he pulls out?

  • I'm not a trust member so it's none of my business really but how can anyone think it's acceptable to make people vote on what appears to be a very major change which could have profound consequences without having the ability to study it beforehand or, likely, hearing any dissenting voices? Does that strike anyone as a fit and proper way of running things? It's almost like they know it will be unpopular and so have decided they need to bounce people into it at all costs. Will people attending on zoom even have the chance to vote or do they just get to ask questions?

  • Spot on, I expect. It's nice RC wants to plough more money into infrastructure which would remain with us past his time, but it will be very sad if it means the complete end of fan ownership of any form. I expect Trust membership will suffer a little without that direct ownership stake.

  • In that scenario the questions that come to my mind are:

    1) Without the 25%, what protections do the Trust have left with regards to the next change of ownership?

    2) What modelling has been done to suggest the improvements above will make us more profitable? And how much is it dependent on us reaching the Championship in the next 3 years?

    3) What happens if we don't reach the Championship? How long will Rob commit to funding the club at the current level?

  • As far as Rob and WWFC goes he can fund players and see if we get promoted and see if his holding increases in value, but as others have pointed out previously that he owns 0% of the ground, and the trust I'm sure would struggle to find 25% even if he was prepared to pay the 75% of a few million quid for updates on an asset he doesn't own. Interested to see what the proposal is.


    Strongly agree with the above though, any changes to the voted trust rules and protected quarter should be published, circulated and voted on by the membership with full and proper notice.

    The trust should not be accepting any less than this

  • Danger danger, high voltage

  • Here we go again.

    Let’s hope we don’t have the hideous propaganda campaign of the Hayes era again. It seemed liked every employee had a mic shoved under their noses and had to say how great Steve Hayes was. A series of hostage videos in the name of a charlatan.

    I feel a bit sick

  • Rob Couphig?

  • Does anyone know what the threshold is for votes to pass? Was it 75% last time?

  • I'd suspect, but clearly don't know, that any vote taken would be to indicate levels of support (or not) for the proposal. Surely any actual vote to change the current business model requires a vote at a Trust EGM or the AGM. It can't possibly be taken at an informal meeting, called with 6 days notice, which is all this is.

    That said - and this is pure speculation from me - if the proposal was to reduce the Trust holding to a fixed level (5/10%) without having to put in extra funds then it might appeal.

    Question is would the Trust have to give up ownership of the stadium? On the subject of which - whatever happened to the loans secured against the ground, which caused such a fuss. Maybe this is a way for the loanees to get a return on their "investment"?

  • I'll take it! Sorry, didn't mean to make light of what seems a fairly alarming development.

  • edited November 3

    It does not look like it is going to be a fun choice either way. We have gone from promises of sustainability and clean toilets to needing to spend a prohibitive amount of money for the promise of sustainability and clean toilets.

  • I don’t think we should objectively view this negatively before we’ve heard the proposal(s)

    Whilst I am fully receptive of what others are saying, we have to be mindful that the Couhigs have put in their ££££ and they will want their metaphorical pound of flesh back. That’s common sense. They’ve self-stated words to that effect from the beginning of their involvement.

    You can’t keep a mid table league 2 club (financially) within touching distance of Championship football in the long run without a change in our ownership structure.

    Let’s wait and see what the proposals look like before being overly judgmental. Be cautious - absolutely. But, give them a chance.

  • Don't worry about the money.

  • Loans secured on the stadium were all cleared from the Couhig's purchase.

    The Trust (through its subsidiary company Frank Adams Legacy limited) owns the stadium unencumbered by any mortgage charge and aims to retain that status.

  • There's certainly been that 'waiting for something to develop' feel to things recently, well here it is (though we still don't know what 'it' is).

  • That is good news about AP, thanks for the clarity @AlanCecil!

  • Toilets can be very expensive to build, don't you know. I've heard a lot of people say they've p***ed a small fortune down the toilet after a weeks hard work.

  • Sorry to put you on the spot, I wouldn't expect any detai but are you able to confirm that the trust have actually negotiated this over a period of time?

  • We'll overlook the "aims to", rather than "will", part of that sentence.

  • Nothing to stop him "ploughing more money in" now is there?

  • I'm not on here to answer on behalf of the Trust but we do have discussions with the majority owners all the time.

  • edited November 3

    Depending on the nature of the proposals Trust members could & should force a vote to defer the decision to allow adequate time for consideration, especially in light of the constitutional changes being proposed by the Trust (to align with The FSA model constitution) & the forthcoming AGM (there needs to be a chance to question all those seeking election on their views on whatever these proposals are).

    Of course I welcome any investment into our club BUT not at any price.

    I do not want the link between the Footbal Club & Trust to be broken or reduced to the club being solely a tenant of the Trust & any reduction in the already too small 25% holding is a step in the wrong direction. There is also the important matter of the legacy conditions that MUST be maintained.

  • Is this why we haven't seen the Couhigs much all season? Planning their Steve Hayes era?

  • I appreciate that, and acknowledge the info you have always helped people out with on here, twitter and others. I don't expect you to answer and might be being picky but I'm intrigued by that intro that says the Trust have "reached an agreement with Rob Couhig" "which the two parties believe is the next logical step". I really hope this is the case and it hasn't been passed down as a take it or leave it.

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