Gunners to 'share' their spoils with supporters
Arsenal will seek to buck the trend of fans revolting against wealthy owners by inviting their supporters to buy shares in the club and play a role in its governance.other Updated: Aug 18, 2010 23:31 IST
Arsenal will seek to buck the trend of fans revolting against wealthy owners by inviting their supporters to buy shares in the club and play a role in its governance.
While fans of Manchester United and Liverpool rage against the debt-funded ownership models of the Glazer family and the Hicks-Gillett partnership, Arsenal will instead seek to harness the power of supporter activism for their benefit.
With Arsenal shares trading at more than £10,000 each, fans will be encouraged to buy portions of shares with relatively small contributions via the Arsenal Fanshare scheme being launched today. Supporters will be invited to pay a minimum of £100, either up front or in £10 monthly contributions, to buy one fanshare, one hundredth of an actual share. In return, the member will secure full shareholder's rights: the chance to attend the annual general meeting, ask questions of the directors and vote on policy.
Arsenal are valued at around £640m and each of its 62,000 shares trades at £10,250. The Gunners are majority-owned by four shareholders: the US property and sports entrepreneur Stan Kroenke, who has just under 30%; the Uzbek-Russian billionaire Alisher Usmanov (27%); long-term shareholder Danny Fiszman owns 16%, while Lady Nina Bracewell-Smith has been looking to publicly sell her 16% stake which has been in her family for the last three generations.