In-profit Stags 'restructuring' ahead as chairman vows to repay loans
CHAD website, 13 September 2005
MANSFIELD Town made a profit of £402,193 in the year ending June 2004 it was revealed at the club's annual meeting last Thursday.
In the previous year the club had made a loss of over £65,000. But 2003/04 proved a much more lucrative season for the Stags, helped greatly by a trip to the Play-Off final at Cardiff's Millennium Stadium.
Chairman Keith Haslam also told the meeting that he was planning a 'restructuring' of the club in the next three months by which time he intended to pay back all outstanding loans he had borrowed from the club.
The chairman wrote off personal loans to himself of £239,297 the previous year which sparked heavy criticism from supporters.
The June 2003 accounts revealed he owed another £345,845 in personal loans which are interest free and repayable on demand.
Also, £582,433 was due from Stags Limited, the football club's controlling company of which Mr Haslam owns 74 per cent of the issued share capital.
Mr Haslam told the meeting: "I am in discussions with my advisors and I hope within the next two to three months I will be in a position to repay the loans in full.
"Then I will be looking to call an EGM to discuss the restructuring of the football club and will have proposals to put before the members at that time for their approval.
"My aim is to clear the loans and put the football club on a sound footing at that time."
Mr Haslam would not elaborate on what the restructuring would involve but said it would not disadvantage minority shareholders in any way.
Turnover for 2003/04 was £2,948,841 compared with £2,680,310 the previous year with profit up from £723,778 in 2003 to £886,008 in 2004.
Mr Haslam was duly re-elected as the company's director.
It was announced that Stags will be looking to change auditors and appoint a more local company for the next accounts as they felt their regular auditors were too slow in producing the accounts.
Shareholders had been promised accounts within three months of the end of a trading year but this had not been happening.
On other issues Mr Haslam said the club was close to completing the jobs needed to get the Safety Advisory group to restore the ground back to full capacity again.
The only outstanding job was the West Stand lifts - a job that should be completed in the next week or two.
""I do not believe the issues we were sanctioned for were any different from other years, but this year I believe they were a little heavyhanded on certain things," he said.
"Other clubs have been shown more leniancy and I think we were harshly dealt with."
He said there was no timescale on the demolition of the Bishop Street Stand.
He revealed it needed a basic minimum of £15,000 of maintenance work and still wouldn't have got a safety certificate without further works.
He said the club would like to clear the side and maybe install some executive boxes but funds were not available right now.
"We can't do much with it unless we can purchase the housing behind it," he said. "We are not in a position to do that. We would have to buy at least 16 houses and, at current market value, that would stack up to a lot of money."
Asked about turning it into terracing, he added: "That would cost a lot in itself and the Football Foundation do not give grants for terracing so 100 per cent of the cost would have to be met by the football club. We will just have to manage the area as it is for now."
Mr Haslam gave positive news on the club's proposed training ground off Beck Lane, Skegby.
The club have been trying to come to an agreement with Ashfield District Council and Mr Haslam said; "A couple of issues needed to be addressed.
"That has been sorted and now needs to go back to committee.
"There was a disagreement over the types of group able to use the facility.
"The council wanted it to be open to a wider range of people and we have now conceded that."
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