Shocking details have been made public as to just how bad the contract ties are with Sports Direct, for Rangers football club.
New Chairman Dave King has agreed to Mike Ashley’s demands for a special shareholders meeting which will take place on 12 June.
Ashley had looked to put pressure on the new regime with a resolution that could force instant payment of the £5m loan from Sports Direct, but King and his associates aren’t taking it lying down.
King plans to expose the until now secret details of the contracts agreed with Ashley’s retail company Sports Direct when Charles Green was in charge at Rangers.
The Rangers Board included the following in their invitation to shareholders to attend the meeting:
“The Directors also propose that at the GM (General Meeting) they shall: Provide shareholders with a breakdown of the income received by Rangers Retail Limited and the payments made by RRL to the Club.
“Advise shareholders on certain of the terms of the shareholders agreement relative to RRL and the effect these terms could have if valid and enforceable.”
Rangers Retail controls the merchandise sales at the Glasgow club and currently sees Sports Direct get 75% of the profits, which would drop back to 49% if the £5m loan was repaid.
However, what the Daily Record have learnt ahead of that 12 June meeting, is the shocking fact that this retail agreement has a SEVEN YEAR notice period, meaning even if Rangers said today that wanted to end the ‘agreement’, it wouldn’t be until 2022 at the earliest that it would come to a conclusion.
The Scottish newspaper claim that Mike Ashley’s lawyers have been working desperately to keep this seven year notice clause and other contract details secret, though Dave King and the rest of the board appear now committed to doing battle with Ashley and Sports Direct over the crippling deals with Newcastle United owner’s retail empire.
Whilst Mike Ashley claimed he was ‘going nowhere’ on Sunday, Newcastle fans will surely look at what is becoming public knowledge north of the border.
If Newcastle United ever parted company with Mike Ashley, there must be massive worries as to just what he would leave behind.
A bit like where Rangers find themselves at the moment, what long-term deals would Mike Ashley commit NUFC to, before he did ‘get out of our club’?
(Make sure you also read this brilliant article by Chris Holt, in response to ‘the best defense of Mike Ashley he’d read so far’)