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Archived News from September 2010

JOHN RADFORD IS NEW STAGS OWNER
29th September 2010 21:16


Sat 25 Sep 2010

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John Radford is new Stags' owner
mansfieldtown.net, Sat 25 Sep 2010, 2.45pm

Lifelong Stags' fan John Radford is the new owner of Mansfield Town Football Club, we are delighted to announce.

http://www.mansfieldtown.net/page/NewsDetail/0,,10325~2164957,00.html

Mr Radford, a multi-millionaire, has bought the club for £1 from previous owners, Andy Saunders, Steve Hymas and Steve Middleton, who will remain at Field Mill as non-executive directors.

A total sum of £250,000 will be immediately injected into the club and the same amount will be invested over the course of the season.

Speaking to the club's official website http://www.mansfieldtown.net, Mr Radford said: "I am ecstatic to be taking over at Field Mil.As a fan of the club and of the town I want to do right by both the Stags and their fans.I believe that we have a squad that is capable of returning to the Football League and a club that can once again inspire the people of Mansfield.

"It is time for an injection of new ideas and leadership which will secure the future of Mansfield Town."

Born in King's Mill Hospital, Mr Radford is a Mansfield lad through and through, having been taught at both Ravensdale and Queen Elizabeth Boys' Grammar School.Despite living in Doncaster for 10 years whilst he set up his business empire, Mr Radford has always remained a dedicated fan of the Stags.

As a businessman, Mr Radford has achieved enormous success with the One Call Group which he founded in 1995 and employs over 200 people in its head office in Doncaster.It is also the main sponsor of Doncaster Rovers Football Club.

Over the last three years the Group has bucked the downturn and has enjoyed significant growth, with an annual turnover of £50million.As well as the One Call Insurance brokerage, Mr Radford is heading up the Maltese insurance underwriting firm, One Insurance Ltd which will see the brand position itself alongside some big names in the insurance industry.

In buying the Club, Mr Radford, who will become the new Chairman, hopes to achieve financial security for the Field Mill outfit and there is little doubt that his entrepreneurial approach to business will provide ample opportunity for the club to grow and embark on a successful future.

Meanwhile, local man Steve Barker is set to be appointed as Chief Executive.

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New Chairman - I can take Stags to the Championship
mansfieldtown.net, Sat 25 Sep 2010
New Chairman John Radford wasted no time in outlining his hugely ambitious plans for Mansfield Town by insisting his aim to emulate and eventually climb above Doncaster Rovers.

http://www.mansfieldtown.net/page/NewsDetail/0,,10325~2165395,00.html?

Rovers, whose shirt sponsors' One Call Insurance, Mr Radford's company, rose from the Football Conference in 2003 and now sit 7th in the Npower Championship.

He is speaking to our Head of Media & Communications, Mark Stevenson.

MS: What were your reasons for purchasing Mansfield Town Football Club?
JR: Any Stags' fan who has the opportunity to play, manage or own the club would surely take that opportunity.Fortunately, I am in a position to support both the Town and the Club for the forthcoming future. My intention is to get the club back into the Football League.This is a club which should be in League One, at least.

MS: What emotions are you going through right now as the new owner?
JR: I am excited.I feel David [Holdsworth] has a good team and I believe we have a good chance of returning to the Football League this season.

MS: You've said that you will be injecting £250,000 into the club immediately. Where will that money be heading?
JR: That money will be heading towards the immediate running of the club. The previous owners have put a lot of money into the club and have kept it afloat with the additional sum of around £10,000 per week. The £250,000 will be used to prevent the club from going into receivership.

MS: You were present on Tuesday night to witness our emphatic victory over York City. Did that performance cement your intentions to buy the club?
JR: I actually made my mind up after the Newport match. Obviously it was a fantastic feeling to see us beat York City 5-0 and it did raise my spirits.

MS: You're a local man, so no doubt you've kept up to date with the goings-on at Field Mill over the years. What are your impressions now, having got your 'foot in the door'?
JR: There are always problems at any football club, but I don't think there is too much for me to worry about here. There are a few things which need clearing up. We have problems with the ground and the way the lease has been set up, so I need to have some conversations about that. Overall, I am happy with what I have seen so far.

MS: Do you have any intentions to purchase the Field Mill Stadium from the current landlord?
JR: I would have to talk to the current landlord about that. It would be nice to get the ground back into the ownership of the club but at the minute I have not had any conversations with the current landlord.

MS: What is your vision for Mansfield Town?
JR: I want to see us in the Championship, at the least and I believe we can get up there.I would like to emulate Doncaster Rovers in their six to seven years by achieving promotions, which would see us in the Championship. They [Doncaster Rovers] were in a far worse condition than Mansfield when they were in the conference. I will try my best to replicate what John Ryan has done at Doncaster and envisage putting in a similar amount of money in to Mansfield as he has done.

MS: Are there any plans or schemes which you will implement here immediately?
JR: It would be poor of me to come here and change things straight away. The previous three directors have done a good job to 'tighten the club's belt' and have run the club efficiently. I won't touch the team side of things, and I am happy with the way the backroom staff is operating. Let me get my feet under the table and then I may make changes.

MS: Will David Holdsworth, the manager, be given extra money towards his playing budget and/or towards a transfer kitty?
JR: I have spoken with David, but not at length.He and I will need to discuss this. Let's see where we are around Christmas time.

MS: The large sums of money which Crawley Town are now operating under have been widely documented. Can you see us, in effect, 'doing a Crawley' and paying a transfer fee of around £300,000, for example?
JR: Let's wait and see. We have a good team at the moment that is playing well. I will need to have this conversation firstly with David before disclosing anything.

MS: Which areas does this club need to improve?
JR: I think this club has been run well and efficiently. It has had historic misfortune, however.I would like to smarten the stands up firstly, now the club has a little money to spend.

MS: Steve Barker, another local man, will be appointed as your new Chief Executive.Tell me about his qualities…
JR: Steve is a very honest and hardworking guy. He has been in management for the past 20 years and I trust him. He will be my right hand man and will firstly assess how things currently run and secondly, put things in place to ensure the club progresses.

MS: What are your immediate priorities?
JR: To keep Mansfield Town in the top five positions in the league.

MS: How excited should the supporters be?
JR: Hopefully they will be very excited. Mansfield Town will be back in the league next season, touch wood.

MS: In times gone past, the image of Mansfield Town may be one which has struggled to make ends meet. Can people now view Mansfield Town as a wealthy club?
JR: Yes. We won't be in a situation where will be facing receivership or anything like that.

MS: What is your message to the supporters?
JR: Firstly, I must thank the fans for their support. I am encouraged to see gates of over 2,000 in this league. Please continue to support the club.We will make sure our pricing structure will be on an even-keel with other clubs in this division and do away with the messy pricing structure we currently have.

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video interview with John Radford
Part 1 --->
http://www.mansfieldtown.net/page/NewsDetail/0,,10325~2165390,00.html
Part 2 --->
http://www.mansfieldtown.net/page/NewsDetail/0,,10325~2165523,00.html

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BBC Radio Nottm audio interview with John Radford --->

http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/football/teams/m/mansfield_town/9023828.stm

Doncaster businessman Radford seals Mansfield takeover
BBC.co.uk
Mansfield Town have been bought out by a Doncaster-based businessman who has pledged to invest £500,000 in the club.

John Radford, who is the managing director of One-Call Insurance, takes over from Steve Hymas, Steve Middleton and chairman Andy Saunders.

He told BBC Radio Nottingham: "Mansfield is my home town, I was born here, I went to school here and I love Mansfield Town."

The cash-strapped Blue Square Premier club had been losing £10,000 a week.

"My intention is to get us back into the Football League," Radford added. "I now have the opportunity to help the town of Mansfield out.

"We have no problems as far as funding is concerned and will speak to the manager about the transfer window."

Radford, whose company are also Doncaster Rovers' shirts sponsors, says he will put in £250,000 immediately, with a further £250,000 to come before the end of the season.

He was paraded on the pitch before Mansfield's 4-0 victory over Eastbourne Borough at Field Mill.

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Stags fan buys club for £1
Evening Post
LIFELONG Stags' fan John Radford was today unveiled as the club's new owner.

http://www.thisisnottingham.co.uk/sport/Offer-Stags/article-2687051-detail/article.html

Mr Radford, a multi-millionaire, has bought the club for £1 from previous owners, Andy Saunders, Steve Hymas and Steve Middleton, who will remain at Field Mill as non-executive directors.

A total sum of £250,000 will be immediately injected into the club and the same amount will be invested over the course of the season.

Mr Radford said: “I am ecstatic to be taking over at Field Mil. As a fan of the club and of the town I want to do right by both the Stags and their fans. I believe that we have a squad that is capable of returning to the Football League and a club that can once again inspire the people of Mansfield .

“It is time for an injection of new ideas and leadership which will secure the future of Mansfield Town .”

In buying the Club, Mr Radford, who will become the new chairman, hopes to achieve financial security for the Field Mill outfit and there is little doubt that his entrepreneurial approach to business will provide ample opportunity for the club to grow and embark on a successful future.

Meanwhile, local man Steve Barker is set to be appointed as chief executive.

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Stags should be in the Football League, says new owner
Evening Post
MANSFIELD Town are a club that should be playing Championship football, insists new multi-millionaire owner John Radford.

http://www.thisisnottingham.co.uk/sport/Stags-Football-League-says-new-owner/article-2687465-detail/article.html?

The successful businessman, who has made his money in the insurance industry, completed his takeover minutes before the high-riding Stags' 4-0 win over Eastbourne Borough.

Radford was paraded in front of the supporters prior to kick-off, having purchased 75 per cent of the club's shares for £1 and will resume the role of chairman.

But he expects to tie-up a deal for the rest – believed to belong to former chairman Andy Perry – in the early part of this week.

Radford, managing director of One Call Group, Doncaster Rovers' shirt sponsors, has plans to invest £500,000 over the course of this season.

A sum of £250,000 will be put in immediately to stabilise a club that was losing £10,000 a week under previous owners Andrew Saunders, Steve Middleton and Steve Hymas, who will stay on as non-executive directors.

The same figure is then to be invested over the rest of the 2010-11 season.

Radford's immediate aim is to get Mansfield back in the Football League, which he firmly believes can be done this season.

But his long-term goal is to emulate friend and Doncaster owner, John Ryan, by taking the Stags into the second tier of English football.

"This club should definitely be in the Championship. I would love to do what John has done at Doncaster with Mansfield Town, but look to go beyond that," said Radford.

"There are not going to be any problems with money at Mansfield. There has been a little bit of deficit on the balance sheet, but there's no problem now.

"They (the two £250,000s) are just initial investments. If the team is winning then I won't need to put too much money into that.

"But I'm sure David (Holdsworth) and I will have a few chats and I will put some money in. I will fully support the manager.

"Mansfield do not deserve to be in the Conference and shouldn't be there. My first objective is to get them out of it."

Encouragingly for supporters, Radford is keen for Mansfield to own their own ground.

The club currently rent Field Mill from former owner Keith Haslam for well in excess of £100,000 a year.

Radford said: "We should have our own stadium and it definitely needs to be back in our hands – that's one of my targets.

"It's a ground that could be good enough to take us into the Championship.

"It's really hard to talk about it too much, because there is a lot of work going on behind the scenes with things that can't be made public.

"But we might have some sort of resolution on that front in the first quarter of next year."

Born at King's Mill Hospital and growing up in the town, attending Ravensdale and Queen Elizabeth Boys' Grammar School, Radford said 'he could not say no' to the chance to buy Mansfield.

He has installed a new chief executive, Steve Barker, to run day-to-day, off-the-field operations.

"I've always looked at buying Mansfield – they have always been in my heart," said Radford.

"I was brought up here and went to school here so I was delighted to have the opportunity to help them out.

"We have been in negotiations for the last three weeks – it didn't take long.

"I think it is going to be a labour of love and I will have a lot of passion for it.

"I can't be here every day because I still have a business to run in Doncaster (which annually turns over £50million), but I will be at every game and at the club a couple of days a week.

"I have a right-hand man in Steve, another Mansfield lad, who is driven and honest. "He will run the club and David (Holdsworth) will look after the playing side."

Having seen the Mansfield support at first hand in their last two home games – and at matches he has attended in previous seasons – Radford knows just how much the club means to the success-starved fans.

He said: "The fans are fantastic and get right behind the club. I have been trying to get to six or seven Stags game a season.

"I have been living just a little bit too far away to come more often – but this gives me a perfect excuse to come every week."

Radford is looking forward to building on what has been a terrific start to the season by Holdsworth and his team.

"I really need to get my feet under the table. I've not had enough time to talk to David at any length," he said.

"But it is fantastic the way the team is performing at the point I have come in – I couldn't wish for it better.

"Eastbourne played reasonably well and are not a bad team, so to score four shows the ability that exists in the current squad."

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Clarification:
Evening Post: "Radford, having purchased 75 per cent of the club's shares for £1.
But he expects to tie-up a deal for the rest – believed to belong to former chairman Andy Perry – in the early part of this week."

Radford has bought 75% of shares in Yellows 08 Ltd, which owns nearly 90% of MTFC Ltd.

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'Ecstatic' One Call boss gets Stags for one pound
CHAD.co.uk, Sat Sep 25 14:58:28

LIFELONG Stags' fan and multi-millionaire John Radford is the new owner of Mansfield Town Football Club, the club announced at Field Mill just before kick-off today.

http://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town-fc/ecstatic_one_call_boss_gets_stags_for_one_pound_1_1640847

Mr Radford, bought the club for £1 from previous owners, Andy Saunders, Steve Hymas and Steve Middleton, who will remain at Field Mill as non-executive directors.

A total of £250,000 will be immediately injected into the club and the same amount will be invested over the course of the season.

Mr Radford said: “I am ecstatic to be taking over at Field Mill. As a fan of the club and of the town I want to do right by both the Stags and their fans. I believe that we have a squad that is capable of returning to the Football League and a club that can once again inspire the people of Mansfield.

“It is time for an injection of new ideas and leadership which will secure the future of Mansfield Town.”

The Mansfield businessman founded the Doncaster-based One Call Group in 1995, and the insurance brokerage now enjoys an annual turnover of £50 million. The firm is the main sponsor of Doncaster Rovers Football Club.

The new owner and chairman also heads up Maltese insurance underwriting firm, One Insurance Ltd. Meanwhile, local man Steve Barker is set to be appointed as chief exec.

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Stags can get back into the Football League with new owner at the helm
Evening Post
ANDY Saunders believes Mansfield Town can get back in the Football League under new owner John Radford.

http://www.thisisnottingham.co.uk/sport/Stags-Football-League-new-owner-helm/article-2687251-detail/article.html?

The multi-millionaire has bought a majority shareholding in the club for £1 from Saunders, Steve Hymas and Steve Middleton.

And the outgoing chairman believes Radford – who also works in the insurance industry – is the ideal man to get the Stags back on their feet.

"I think the club have got a fantastic new owner in John where automatic promotion or the play-offs is the aim this season," he said.

"He works in the same kind of business as me and I have known him for a while.

"I think he will do a fantastic job for this club and I'm sure he will push Mansfield Town forward."

Reflecting on his time as co-owner, Saunders admits his move to relinquishing control is tinged with sadness.

But he believes it is in the best interests of the club – and will remain involved as a non-executive director.

Saunders added: "It's been traumatic at time and not been easy, but it's also been enjoyable.

"But I'm now looking forward to the rest of the season and I'm sure we are going to get back in the Football League under John.

"David (Holdsworth) has got a good squad together and I'm sure we are going to go somewhere."

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