MCT 2021 AGM Summary

Dear members,

A big thank you to those of you that joined us in person and on Zoom for our 2021 AGM on Monday evening. We’re looking to host more events across the next year, not to mention finally getting a date in for our postponed sportsmans dinner that many of you are confirmed to join.

This week’s update is a summary of the past year of Morton Club Together coupled with some updates from the AGM itself.

The past year has been a successful year overall for Morton Club Together, with several important moments and milestones. Naturally our highlight was on the evening of the 8th of July 2020 when it was announced to members, and the wider public, of the in-principle agreement to transfer the ownership of the club from Golden Casket to MCT.

The time since has seen MCT play a growing role at the football club, as we looked to gain an understanding of how a professional club is run within the Scottish game.

Some of our key highlights of the past year include:
  • Membership increasing continually and breaking through the 800 barrier – now sitting at 859 which is a fantastic number.
  • Maintaining and increasing contributions to the club to over £100,000 – again, this is set to be £120,000 over the 2021/22 season, a hugely significant sum.
  • Selling 240 facemasks resulting in a £700 donation to Belville Community Gardens
  • Consulting with members and being able to significantly improve our initial takeover deal to ensure that Cappielow is within the ownership of the club. The strength and volume of engagement from members was crucial in this process – we received over 500 responses during this consultation.
  • Making strides towards beginning to change the club culture to embrace aiming for a break even budget and a sustainable future.
  • Launching two new strips including our commemorative, sponsorless 1922 cup final kit – sales of these two strips have been positive to date.
  • Being on the brink of completing community ownership – while we’d love to say that deal is now completed, we continue to work towards ensuring all boxes are ticked and hope to have positive news soon, until then we will continue to update you weekly.
  • Supporting the recruitment of the club’s new General Manager, Chris Ross.
The past year has been significantly impacted by Covid as well as some periods of turbulence within the club. We certainly do not think that there could be a more trying time to be involved in learning and ultimately leading the running of a professional football club. Therefore, it’s important to say how incredible your support has been in achieving what we have against an extremely difficult backdrop. As has always been said, MCT’s strength is in its members and over the past year we have had many members help the club through contributions and the selfless devotion of time to ride out this difficult period. It's easy to forget that this is just our third year in existence. We've come a long way but there's still a lot of hard work to go to keep moving Morton forward.

We’re delighted to announce that three new directors have been voted onto the MCT board. Aidan Tracey, Sam Robinson and Chris Samson will work alongside Graham McLennan, Gordon Ritchie and Stewart Farmer to bring new impetus and fresh ideas to drive MCT’s future success. 192 members voted and the results were as follows; Aidan 77.43%, Sam 83.33% and Chris 84.33%.

We’d also like to take the opportunity to thank Graham Barr and Ivor McCauley for their dedication to MCT over their time as directors, as they step down from the board. Their hard work has helped us get where we are today and we look forward to continuing to work closely with Graham in his place on the club board, and Ivor will continue to be a valued MCT member.

The other official AGM business on the night was voting on the proposed amendments to MCT's articles. Here's the information on the votes for both:
  • Add para 4.4 “Shares in Greenock Morton Football Club Ltd, owned or controlled by the Company, may be sold or disposed of at the discretion of the directors of the Company subject to the following restrictions:
    • a) the approval of a General Meeting is required if the sale would result in the total shareholding in GMFC falling below 75% of the total share capital of GMFC
    • b) the approval of a General Meeting is required if the sale would result in the total shareholding in GMFC falling below 50% of the total share capital of GMFC.
    • The proceeds of any sale of shares must be deposited into the funds of the Company.”
Members voted to approve this amendment with 82 voting yes and 2 voting no.
  • An amendment to article 15.3 to delete “20” and substitute therefor “12”.
Members voted to approve this amendment with 84 voting yes and 2 voting no.

Fans can view our current articles of association here, but note that these will now be amended following the above votes to approve.

Questions asked during the AGM, and the answers provided, can now be found below.

Q – There was mention of a potential upturn in member (following completion of the takeover) is there any idea on how many new members may join?
A – In short no. However, after any significant announcement numbers have increased. For example, after the announcement of reaching a deal to take over the club membership almost doubled in numbers. Following that there was a boost of around 100 members once it was known that MCT were closely involved with the shadowing of the running of the club. Therefore, based on this we believe there could be another increase upon takeover.
Q – There was mention of selling very small amounts of shares to fans. Does this amendment prevent someone from offering to buy 25% of Morton?
A – Any offer that would be for a shareholding of more than 25% would require a special general meeting to be held with the detail of the proposed offer being made and a vote of members required before this could occur.
Q – How much is 25% shareholding of the club worth at the present time
A – At the moment the value of 25% is probably negligible as the transaction for MCT to buy approximately 75% of the club is for a nominal fee (£1). Hopefully the value will increase as the backdrop is that the club has been running at a loss and that in future a 25% shareholding offer would reflect the value at that time if the club is consistently at breakeven or even making a profit.
Q – The amendment is based on two thresholds where member approval is required from members for sales that reduce shares to 75% and 50.1%. On the second threshold of between 75% and 50.1% would it be better from a control point of having smaller increments of say more than 10% sales of shares would require a members meeting for approval?
A – Yes that is possible. If members wish to introduce further controls such as the ones suggested then this can occur at a future meeting if such a change is proposed. As for tonight, we can only act on the proposal as it stands for controls at 75% and 50.1%. However, if members disagree with this then they can vote no tonight.
Q – There is a small amount of shareholders who hold a very small amount of shares. Does tonights amendment affect these shareholdings?
A – There is around 10% of shares in individual hands and these are not changed by the amendment to the articles.
Q – There has been mention of the MCT shareholding and others, along with sales of examples of small traches of shares as gifts of approximately 100 shares. What is total amount of shares presently available?
A – The total number of shares is in excess of 6 million of which MCT will ultimately own 89.8%. Therefore, individual sales of 100 MCT shares are negligible to the overall shareholding.
Q – How sustainable is the MCT business model and is there any indications of the impact to the club in future seasons as there is a move to sustainable budgeting?
A – Coming off the back of one of the worse seasons impacted by covid there are opportunities to improve funding through existing stalled commercial offerings to assist. In addition, the club appointed a new General Manager who comes from a background of securing funding incomes from new and more innovative ways and has done so for other clubs. Overall the club board and General Manager has a close eye on all income streams at the moment with a view to starting to widen and increase the offerings over a three year period. There is also a focus on expenditure with a greater focus on remaining on budget than previously.
Q – Is there any funding for example through government schemes that would help with expenses for example with the youths?
A – Yes the club do this with the academy graduates to allow more youths to be retained than perhaps would have been able to. In partnership with the Community Trust there is good experience in securing additional funding and this will continue. Whilst the focus is away from the first team as this has to be based on the clubs own financial backing there are now a number of first team squad who have benefitted from these schemes available.
Q – In the last AGM it was mentioned about a super level of membership. What happened with that?
A – The super membership was our patron membership. We are delighted to have two anonymous donors who contribute £25,000 each meaning a total of £50,000. This work will continue to see if further patron benefactors can be involved in the future.
Q – What is the target and how do we reach it?
A – It’s a tricky question as there is no magic number. Over the past 18 months the increase has been incredible given the economic circumstances. A soft target has been the 1,000 member number and at present it isn’t far away. The targets have been iterative based on 100 branches therefore the 1,000 is looming as a unofficial target.
Q – What professional assistance can members give to help market things better?
A – In terms of support all assistance is welcomed and we have had members if they have skills that would benefit MCT and the club to allow us to build a bank of skills and knowledge that can be drawn upon.
Q – To help drum up more support it would be good to see a plan of the direction for the club under MCT ownership. Is there a plan to market what the longer-term plan is including using mediums such as the Tele?
A – Yes this is a very relevant response. There is a need to boost the MCT marketing team in order to push what MCT is planning to do. As we come out the pandemic a big thing will be to offer to meet members and prospective members in person. There may be more meetings so that this can happen. More documentation will be developed and pushed to help more members join MCT.
Q – Now there are 6 board members (club board) does this prevent the potential to introduce a board member with football expertise at board level?
A – There is a vacancy at the new Morton board that remains available to be filled. Filling this is a matter for the club board and it’s not possible to speak for club board members not present. However filling any board should be based on what someone can positively contribute to the board as opposed to filling a vacancy for the sake of it. A Morton AGM is intended to held soon and this is perhaps a question for the new club board at that AGM.
Q – Is there any likelihood of getting the deal over the line?
A – Yes. We have had an update this morning from our solicitors confirming they have received the ‘transfer bundle’ therefore we assume this is the final documents for signing. There is always the chance that solicitors, by their very nature, may find areas that require a little more back and forth however this does appear the final stage.

We hope that some more stable times are ahead of us and having fans back at games is a huge step towards a normal we recognise. We fully expect the takeover to be completed soon, once all the I’s are dotted and T’s are crossed by the relevant legal advisors, though we are very pleased to say that the main hurdles appear to be cleared.

If you have any questions or queries don't hesitate to get back in touch by replying to this email or sending us one at any time to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Thank you again for your support and patience. We’ll see you tomorrow at Cappielow for the visit of Raith Rovers.

Thanks,

MCT Board