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New business team set to take Bradford Bulls forward
7:00am Friday 23rd August 2013 in Sport
Bradford Bulls have announced plans for a 14-man team of “strong business heads” to put the club on a more secure footing.
The behind-the-scenes restructure is aimed at easing the burden on owner Omar Khan after a challenging first 12 months in charge. General manager Ryan Whitcut insists the new set-up will boost the club financially – all will invest equally – and ensure every business base is covered.
Whitcut said: “There have been some really difficult decisions to make since the club was taken over last year. It needed one person to make those and that was Omar.
“We’re now at the stage to move the club forward to the next level with a board of 14 equal shareholders. That way, the corporate governance will not rest on one man’s shoulders and we will share the financial load.
“Omar’s putting his money in as well and will remain as chairman. Gerry Sutcliffe is another investor and will still be co-chairman. There will be more areas of individual expertise with accountants and lawyers coming on board and access to a network well beyond our traditional areas.
“Some people coming in love rugby league and the Bradford Bulls, others are looking at it as an investment for the future. It’s going to open roads to other sponsors coming in as well.
“Financially it’s been hard. We lost the central distribution money from the RFL and had a large amount of money come out the woodwork from the past administration.
“Getting these people on board will provide a further financial injection in the club and help it grow stronger.
“We’re looking to achieve a new dynamic commercial approach and open doors to exciting events that the ground and stadium can be used for.”
The Bulls have missed out on the play-offs for the fifth year running and will start next season with only half of the £1.2 million RFL money as a consequence of their recent administration.
But Whitcut believes there are plenty of reasons for optimism.
“Setting a strong foundation will lead to greater success in Super League. Having this board of 14 will make the club a more successful place, both on and off the field.
“All the budgets and cashflows for next year are aimed at making a profit.
“If there are any shortfalls, then there are 14 people to fund that.
“Next year is the last one of licensing and then we go straight into relegation and promotion. It’s important we are in the top eight and with the team we are putting together, we believe we can challenge for silverware.”
With next year’s season tickets about to be launched, the Bulls feel the board revamp will reassure worried fans and convince them the club are building firm foundations.
Whitcut added: “Speculation has obviously been high over the last month, but this should ease everybody’s mind. The RFL knew the situation we were in and were very happy with how we’re doing things.
“We always said it would take two or three years to bring the club back after administration. But what we’ve done in the last 12 months has far exceeded what we hoped. We’re in a much better position that what we anticipated.”
There are still further opportunities to invest and interested parties should contact Whitcut.
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