The administrators Duff & Phelps had earlier stated that the £24.4 million was not recorded being put through the club’s accounts and that it had gone through the parent company’s bank, fuelling further speculation around Craig Whyte’s ownership of Rangers.
Questions are now being asked about the £24.4 million – where did it go? There are a number of theories and that is what they are at this moment in time. Some journalists are hinting that the money went to pay off the £18 million debt to Lloyds Banking Group, while fans are jumping to conclusions that centre around the pocketing of the money by Mr Whyte. Now there is no proof as yet, on where the money has actually gone and what it has been used for, but one thing is clear Ticketus are not expecting their £24.4 million back.
Why you may ask? Because it was not a loan to Craig Whyte, Wavetower/Rangers FC Group Limited or Rangers Football Club. It was a four-year deal to buy a percentage of the season tickets at Ibrox, just like Whyte had sold off the catering side of Rangers weeks earlier he signed a deal which saw Ticketus secure their percentage of tickets as a company asset rather than lending money, therefore Ticketus are not a creditor.
That is why there was no security on the Ticketus deal, because the tickets themselves were the security. No matter what happens to Rangers Football Club whether they come out of administration or are liquidated and are resurrected as a new company, Ticketus will still hold their percentage of season tickets purchased from Craig Whyte.
In a statement, Octopus Investments said: “Octopus Investments would like to clarify the position of Ticketus with regard to the current Glasgow Rangers coverage.
“Ticketus is one of the many entities into which Octopus Protected EIS invests. Ticketus has purchased tickets for Glasgow Rangers games for a number of seasons in advance, as it has done for a number of years previously with the club.
“Ticketus does not lend money; Ticketus is the owner of assets – the tickets. Octopus is continuing to work with the administrators and Glasgow Rangers on this matter.”
What does that mean for Rangers FC 1873 or Rangers FC 2012? Simple a loss of much-needed revenue. Ticket sales are the biggest commodity that the club has and having a percentage of it cut from their grasp for four years is a significant hit especially for a club looking to get back on their feet after administration or worse case scenario liquidation.
Rangers have until the 31st March before they have to submit audited accounts, the deadline that the SPL expect all clubs participating in Europe next season. If they do not meet that deadline then Rangers will not be eligible to play in Europe next season.
With no European football revenue and the loss of a percentage of season ticket money, the ability to bring in players of a quality to challenge for the title would be at a lesser level than that of rivals Celtic.