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Pompey Supporters’ Trust launches bid for club

This is a story from the FSF archive – the FSF and SD merged to become the FSA in 2019.

Pompey Supporters’ Trust (PST) has launched the next stage in its bid to purchase Portsmouth with a pre-share offer to fans. PST says the pre-share offer will show the administrator that fans can “offer more than just goodwill” – they can offer finance too.

PST and the Pompey’s 12th Man campaign surveyed more than 6,000 Pompey supporters earlier this year. The survey results showed that Pompey supporters want to be formally involved in any new ownership structure, and are willing to invest money in a credible and financially sustainable community buy out of the club.

The PST pre-share offer, which launches on Saturday 31st March, will encourage supporters to donate a minimum of £100 into a safe and secure solicitor’s escrow account, managed by Verisona. The trust has worked with Supporters Direct and independent legal and financial advisors.

If a significant level of interest from fans is demonstrated through the pre-share offer, PST says it will undertake the final stage of due diligence with the administrators PKF and develop a full offer to purchase Portsmouth Football Club. This includes an outline of what fans will get in return for their investment stake.

Before submitting any formal offer, the proposal will be presented in full to investors, PST members, supporters, and the local community. No money will be used or transferred from the escrow account without the individual written consent of supporters, and money can be withdrawn at any time in any stage of the process.

If fans are not happy with the terms of any offer for the club – if an offer is submitted – then money can be removed at any time. If a formal PST bid for the club is not submitted all funds will be returned subject to a 2.5% administration fee.

Ashley Brown, PST chair, said: “We want our football club to represent the best of our community and for meaningful fan involvement to shape the way the club is run. With money pledged by fans, we hope to show the administrator that we have more than just fan goodwill and ideas – we have the capability to purchase Pompey and secure its future.

“As things stand, there do not appear to be many other options for Pompey, it may need to be our Club or no Club. Portsmouth Football Club needs meaningful fan involvement, and we may never have a better opportunity to play a significant role in the running of the club we love.”

Local MP Penny Mordaunt backed PST’s plans too: “The fans are the club and every club whose fans take a stake in it will benefit – in the boardroom, on the pitch, and in the community. The wider football community and Parliament agrees the time is right for fan ownership.”

For further details of the pre-share offer, go to: www.communitypompey.co.uk

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Funding partners

  • The Football Association
  • Premier Leage Fans Fund

Partners

  • Gamble Aware
  • Co-operatives UK
  • FSE
  • Kick It Out
  • Level Playing Field
  • Living Wage Foundation
  • SD Europe