Blues creditors willing to wait

CREDITORS of crisis-hit Ipswich Town are sticking with the Blues – but they have no choice but to play the waiting game for money they are owed by Portman Road.

CREDITORS of crisis-hit Ipswich Town are sticking with the Blues – but they have no choice but to play the waiting game for money they are owed by Portman Road.

When Town asked for an administration order, the running of the company – and the paying of its bills – were handed over to a team from the CVA (Company Voluntary Arrangement).

But while this does not mean the club, as a company, is insolvent it does mean that their assets are frozen while the new, temporary management team reorganises matters.

An administration order – not to be confused with receivership which would mean the company was being run by insolvency practitioners with a view to selling – was requested by the club to preserve the business and allow it to be reorganised.

While the reshuffling is being done, however, Town's creditors (businesses or individuals it owes money to) will have to wait for payment.

The bottom line for creditors with this arrangement is that at the end of the day they will get at least some of their money, if not all, back when the situation is resolved.

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Without this move, Town could have found itself with no choice but to go in to receivership and like any other business could have found its assets sold off and preferential and secured creditors, ie Inland Revenue, being assured of their cut first from the spoils.

Ipswich Town has among its creditors, Greene King, Gemini Travel and Ancient House Press.

For the last ten years Ancient House Press has been printing the Town's programmes.

The club owes Ancient House Press some money but financial director Edwin Mayhew said now was not the time to discuss any debt in detail.

"We are still in talks with the Club and the administrators and have discussed with them our current situation. However we are sure that things will be sorted out."

Mr Mayhew said that ITFC was a "landmark company in the town" and lots of businesses have enjoyed a corporate relationship with them over the years.

"Everyone is very sad that things have got to this stage and we all hope that there will be a good outcome from negotiation with creditors by the CVA (Company Voluntary Arrangement)."

He said he was in no position to discuss whether Ancient House Press would or would not continue printing programmes for Town during its current crisis.

A Greene King spokeswoman said that in addition to supplying beer to Portman Road the Bury St Edmunds-based brewer has its own named stand there and as a company they support home games from their own box.

"We are active supporters of Town and will continue to be through this crisis," she said.

The spokeswoman said she could not comment on whether the club had any outstanding bills with them.

Ed Nicholls, owner of Gemini Travel said the club had taken positive action in asking administrators to oversee its financial crisis.

His Ipswich-based firm provides coach and minibus services and is owed money by the club.

Mr Nicholls, who is a Town fan and a shareholder, said: "I am supporting the club in what they are doing. It is up to the administrators about when we get paid. Now we have got to get behind the team," he added.

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