This investment has been made possible by FSS’s successful application to the Scottish Government’s Fans Bank initiative set up to enable football fans to own and support their community-based clubs.
This sees FSS receive the sum invested, in the form of a 20-year, interest-free loan from the Government. Furthermore, Falkirk Supporters Society and Falkirk FC have entered into a partnership agreement, which will see FSS provide on-going financial support to the club, via member subscriptions after loan repayments, while receiving two seats on the club’s board and on-going support in growing FSS membership and shareholding.
FSS will be officially recognised as the organisation representing Falkirk supporters but will remain completely independent of the club. The parties have agreed that the initial FSS investment and on-going funding, will be focussed on infrastructure and football, with an emphasis on youth development.
This will enable the club to lay a new pitch and upgrade floodlighting at the Falkirk Stadium (which also benefits the local community via the activities of the Falkirk Foundation) as well as improving football performances in both the short and long term.
FFC Board member Kenny Jamieson said:
“The Board at Falkirk FC are 100% committed to fan-ownership and to working in partnership with supporters for the benefit of the club we all love. We see supporters’ involvement as essential in achieving our objective of making the club sustainably successful in the long-term. This new investment and partnership agreement provides a massive boost to everyone connected with Falkirk FC.”.
FSS Executive Committee Member Paul Robertson added:
“The success of FSS means that the support will continue to have a major say in the direction of the club, collectively own enough shares to stop any unwanted external threats to the club and continuing to contribute to the future success of the team.
While we will have to pay back the loan from the Scottish government, the lack of interest fees and the long period for repayment meant that accepting the offer was a “no-brainer” and, importantly, only 20% of our future income will go in repayments – over 80% of all the money we raise from now on will still be invested in the club: currently that is around £80,000 a year and we intend to continue to grow and raise even more money for Falkirk.”