Trust Resolutions to 2012 PLC AGM

Published on Friday 16th November, 2012 by Celtic Trust

Here are the speeches made by Trust members in moving the Trust resolutions

Resolution 10 Shirt Sponsorship - Eddie Greenhill

Resolution 10

This AGM recognises and celebrates Celtic's unique and distinctive origins and traditions.

Accordingly it calls upon the Board and management of Celtic PLC to undertake the following actions:

a) When the current shirt sponsorship arrangement comes to an end, they should seek a shirt sponsor for Celtic alone and not one related to any other team/Club.

b) In the event of this not being possible, Celtic should then play without shirt sponsorship and instead display the logo of an appropriate charity on the match shirt.

 

Before I begin, Mr Chairman, could I take this opportunity to thank Neil Lennon and the team for the well-deserved victory against Barcelona and for giving us all one of the best nights ever had at Parkhead.

In terms of the resolution at hand, I note that the Board is calling on shareholders to oppose this motion.  However, in the light of the overwhelming backing they have received from a mediocre sports journalist who is banned from Parkhead, I am wondering if the Board might be having second thoughts?

I’ll leave you to think about that and move one. 

The Celtic shirt is one of the most iconic in football history. It is recognisable throughout the world and is a symbol of our club and what our club stands for. Brother Walfred's dream of a football club formed to aid an impoverished community, shunned by those around them, is what makes Celtic's origins and traditions unique and distinctive in football.

Our uniqueness should be treasured, no more so than in this our 125th year.

The Chief Executive, Mr Lawwell, in response to the First Minister's remarks, said, earlier this year, "We look after ourselves. We don't rely on any other club. We have a stand-alone strategy." We ask the Board to stand by these words by not pursuing any shirt sponsorship that would require a relation to any other team, once the current deal comes to an end.

We ask that this be put into practice, especially when dealing with the new club in Scottish football, "The Rangers", who wish to utilise the branding of a deceased club that was renowned for over a century of open discrimination, international thuggery by its followers and a level of corruption and cheating that's never been seen before in this country. How can it possibly make commercial sense to associate our image with a corrupt and tainted brand such as this?  Is the money that is brought in through shirt sponsorship really enough to taint the ideals of who we are and what we stand for?

As the Chairman said in St Mary’s last Tuesday night, ‘We wear the hoops and the world knows what we stand for’.  I could not agree more Mr Chairman.

So if the only shirt sponsors that come forward refuse to deal with Celtic alone, then we ask that, in keeping with Brother Walfred's ideals and in the spirit of the 1254125 campaign, the shirt be used to promote an appropriate charity, ideally based locally.

I have recently found that to buy a home top in the Celtic Store without a sponsor is currently £10 more expensive than with the sponsor. Is the decision not to reduce the sponsor-less jersey made because the Board know that those who wish to own this top are willing to pay extra for the right?

I remember trying to buy the last home top without a sponsor and was told by the sales assistant, in whispered tones, that they were kept under the counter like some dodgy magazine. Now they are sitting pride of place on the rails and at a tenner dearer. Does the board not acknowledge that there is a considerable market for this type of shirt?

After THAT amazing result last Wednesday, we can now all agree that we are on a level with Barcelona, a club also born through a unique origin. So why don't we follow their example of allowing our prestigious jersey to be used as a force for good, if there are no sponsors willing to be part of our distinctive nature.

Jock Stein said, "Celtic jerseys are not for second best, they don't shrink to fit inferior players." Neither should they shrink to fit any sponsor that is not willing to stand alone with our honourable history and traditions.

I move Resolution 10 and urge all shareholders to remain true to the spirit and vision of Celtic's founding fathers and support it.

Thank you.

 

 

Resolution 11: Two way communication: Greg Kelly

Resolution 11

This AGM requests that the Board organises a working party on corporate governance with representatives of the Board and supporters' organisations which will report to the 2013 Celtic PLC AGM.  This report will include recommendations to improve and formalise a two-way communication structure between the supporters and the Board.

 

First of all I too would like to thank Neil, the players, back room staff and the Board for contributing to what was a wonderful week during the 125 year anniversary of this great club.

I was lucky enough to be at the service at St Mary's Church to mark our anniversary organised by the fan group the "Celtic Graves Society" and then the game against Barcelona and I'm sure we will all agree it was a truly magical couple of evenings. I would also like to thank my fellow supporters for creating an atmosphere rightly regarded as the best in world football.

And with that I lead on to resolution 11 for a corporate governance working party. Over a number of years the Celtic Trust has asked that the Board organise a mechanism whereby a representative of fans could be democratically elected on the Board of Celtic PLC. Although strongly supported they have been opposed by the Board and defeated.

While the Board believe that they consult and communicate more extensively and more effectively with its supporters than almost any other club I would like the Board to appreciate that this however is not like any other club and as Wednesday is testament to we are not like any other supporters.

 What we ask is for a better structured channel of communication between the fans and the custodians of our great club. Like on the pitch we should be continually striving for better results and we believe that the communication model currently deployed by the Board is too one directional.

While it is a great achievement to be awarded gold standard club licensing I ask why we are not seeking to be awarded a platinum standard which includes the appointment of a supporter liaison officer. I believe as a club we should be looking to attain the greatest standards we can. After all is that not the Glasgow Celtic way?

 We are not disputing the fact that regular meetings take place between the Board and supporter representatives however we feel as if the Board cannot possibly turn down an opportunity to make this process better for both parties.

We are living through tough times of austerity and appreciate the difficult job the Board has to do at times however in too many cases, the Board makes decisions before consulting us and not after.

Just to give one example of a poor decision which would not have been made if supporters had been properly consulted: This season you increased the price of the under 12 ticket from £50 for 16 games to £129 for 18 games thereby effectively charging young supporters £39 each for the two Dundee games. This is a decision we feel should have been discussed with the fans.

 If we look to the German football model in the Bundesliga we see a league thriving with full houses week in week out, due in part to reasonably priced tickets, and the incorporation of fan representation at Board level of many of the major clubs. As a club and as a business we need to look to these models as a way to continue our growth and prosperity for another 125 years.

 We have been rightly applauded worldwide this last week for the unique sense of community and spirit this club stands for and what I believe Wednesday showed is that when we are all united together there is nothing we can't achieve.

 So I ask the Board again to work with us in finding a better structure of communication.

 

 
 

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