Dermot Desmond poised to take 25 per cent stake in Shamrock Rovers

By Mary Dennehy

DERMOT Desmond is set to become a 25 per cent shareholder in Shamrock Rovers if proposals are accepted by the membership at a General Meeting.

The Tallaght-based club issued a statement after a meeting with the Shamrock Rovers Members Club today where information regarding a proposed change in club shareholding was shared.

Tallaght stadium night final

The proposal would see businessman Dermot Desmond become a 25 per cent shareholder in the club.

According to the statement: “The board of directors of the Members Club outlined to the members the proposals that have been developed in recent months in conjunction with its co-shareholder in Rovers, Ray Wilson.

“Shamrock Rovers has evolved from being a members’ owned entity in 2005 to a hybrid model in 2016 when a partnership structure was developed with Mr Ray Wilson.

“This proposal is the latest potential evolution in the hybrid model of fan ownership combined with private ownership and is a structure that the board of directors of the Members Club feel is a long term sustainable model that will propel Shamrock Rovers forward on and off the pitch.”

The statement said that in a note to club members, Mr Desmond confirmed that should he become a shareholder in Rovers that “his intention is not in the pursuit of monetary gain and there is no financial or asset play”.

The statement continued: “Mr Desmond noted that he would expect any positive future cash flow generated to be reinvested in the club such that all stakeholders (including supported, players, coaching staff, management and sponsors etc.) will benefit.

“Mr Desmond stated that his sole motivation in considering this investment is to advance the cause of Shamrock Rovers.

“Mr Desmond is especially interested in supporting Shamrock Rovers’ ambitious plans to further develop the club’s Academy and building on the very strong foundations laid by the club in recent years.

“Mr Desmond sees any involvement with Shamrock Rovers as being more akin to a trustee than a shareholder.

“He believes that the proposed investment would be put the club on a sound financial footing, providing stability to allow the long term benefits of the club’s Academy plan to bear fruit and to afford Shamrock Rovers the continued opportunity to credibly pursue success on the pitch.”

According to the statement released by Rovers, Mr Desmond’s note concluded by informing members that he would be “delighted” to become a shareholder in, and help support, a club “with a rich tradition.”

The Members Club will now consider the information provided today, Saturday, October 5, and convene a general meeting to formally vote on accepting or rejecting proposals.

If the proposal is accepted, the new ownership structure of Shamrock Rovers will be Members Club (50 per cent), Ray Wilson (25 per cent) and Dermot Desmond (25 per cent).

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