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Lowe: was he right?


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OK first up this is meant to be light hearted, not some forum fisticuff boll ox.... :)but CB Fry made an interesting point as well as others on one of the Finance threads concerning self sustainabilty - based on the concern that at present we are far from it, and how difficult is/was even in the prem - well lets be honest for a moment, because we have to admit that Southamption was one of the few clubs that brokeeven most years in the prem - sure this was supplemented now and again by a major sale, but in general the financials were always well balanced.

 

Let's not argue about how badly the money was spent, or the number and frequency of managerial change, nor his arrogance etc - different issues and ones that have been done to detah, but was he right in the financial management given that:

 

1. We have seen what can happen if things are not controlled - especially in the extreme case with the Skates

 

2. Let's be honest about WGS - a decent bloke and good manager for us, but its pretty obvious he left because Rupes refused to fund the 12 mil + wages for Saha and Malbranque - he may have used a pathetic excuse about giving rivals money, but its pretty obvious that we could NOT afford such a spend and what it might do to the wage structure... do we nnow look on this any differently, as it seems to me the majority are now saying self sustainability is the right and proper thing to do?

 

3. Do fans now have a different attitude in general - would we still sing 'spend some feckin money'? even if we knew the books were balanced and the cash not available ?

 

4. We are fine now, spending way beyond the advised 50-60% max wage to turnover as the Liebherrs and NC always had the funds to cover this, but What would we have thought of Lowe had he borowed form banks or elsewhere 12-15 mil extra to fund WGS's wishes? madness or backing the manager?

 

5. Some of the more analytical went on about attracting investment - well this has never been explained to any real satisfaction. Share issues can raise money - but dilute the % value of the individual share holdings, unless the shareholders themselves purchase the additional shares - not all our shareholders had such capital and it is only really an attractive option if the investment funds generated truely add value to company - spending said cash on player wages would not have increased the clubs value, possibly decreased it as we would have been tied into 2 more expensive contracts.

 

6. A lot was made of 'lowe would step aside if someone invested 25 mil' - its been misinterpreted many times as some sort of 'sale' figure. This is not what he meant. It was really a throw-away comment in response to those caling for him to resign. He meat he would be happy for someone else to be chairman if they brough 25 mil into the club either through a new share issue or as a gift - then he would leave the cahirmans seat but retain his shareholding and possibly a board seat... pretty secure in teh knowledge that no one would invest that kind of cash in a club were it would not create any value - merely be swallowed up by operating costs - evn then it would not have seen us into the the top 8 regularly...

 

The Liebherrs HAVE now which by the time next yaers accounts are published may in effct rise to 40mil - the difference is that there is value in that investment if we are promoted with the asset probably worth anywhere between 45-60 mil on promotion. Its why they want the club to be self sustaining when in the prem, because yo could blow 33 mil as a gift and see no return in value - it just flows out the door in inflated wages and agent fees. I do not believe they want to operate the club in that way. Be intersting to see how fans react if we stay within our budget - will we be satisfied with the results that that will potentially restricht us to... or will teh 'spend some feckin mone' brigade be out in force again?:p

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No Lowe was the worst thing that ever happened to this club. The fact that u have brought this up says what a complete luuvie u always were. Under Lowe relegated 2 divisions! Cortese nearly promoted 2. Massive difference.

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Too long; didn't read.

 

I got halfway down which is something I never do.

 

The underlying issue was our PLC status. Clubs be they social clubs, bowls clubs, bridge clubs etc etc should be all about providing a service and reinvesting the proceeds collected in doing so. Syphoning money out of a club is just wrong and that ultimately was our downfall because it put us at a disadvantage to well run privately owned clubs who's model we could not compete against. I'm surprised that we survived for so long.

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Make no apologies and freely admit I believe he WAS right on the finance strat in the Prem... is it not worth asking the question as to whether self sustaining policy is the right way forward - especially in light of what NC has planned and where we are currently with this?

 

DP - cant leave before 12 as gotta pick up Father in law....

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I got halfway down which is something I never do.

 

The underlying issue was our PLC status. Clubs be they social clubs, bowls clubs, bridge clubs etc etc should be all about providing a service and reinvesting the proceeds collected in doing so. Syphoning money out of a club is just wrong and that ultimately was our downfall because it put us at a disadvantage to well run privately owned clubs who's model we could not compete against. I'm surprised that we survived for so long.

 

Agree with that - but ti wa snot a question about making profits and share dividends etc - Although ironically it wa steh PLC status that created an opening for gettig Lowe out - no this was about a break even model?

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No Lowe was the worst thing that ever happened to this club. The fact that u have brought this up says what a complete luuvie u always were. Under Lowe relegated 2 divisions! Cortese nearly promoted 2. Massive difference.

 

Nah - a luvvie of the fiscal policy yes undoubtedly - not necessarily of all the other baggage he came with - more a luvvie of the policy than of Lowe himself. That was always a concept that some fans struggled with....

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Agree with that - but ti wa snot a question about making profits and share dividends etc - Although ironically it wa steh PLC status that created an opening for gettig Lowe out - no this was about a break even model?

 

Of course it wasn't. I don't think you understand the concept of a listed company. It's all about having the ability to give a slice of the cake to shareholders.

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its hard to argue pro lowe when the clbu ended up gping in to administration. That said there are similarities with the "sustainable" approach Lowe was in some areas promoting. Its what Madejski has been trying to provide at reading and although its not always exhilerating for the fans it provides a nice stability and when you get somewhere youve really earnt it. COmparing Lowe and COrtese (not the OP but others) is a waste of time. COrtese is amazing but a very different set up. Adkins has been brilliant (im an Adkins luvvie for sure) but anyone who has played league sport at any level will know that a winning team is far easier to play in and manage than a losing team. Starting the new generation in League 1 rather than hanging on th coat tails of the prem could have been an advantage in some areas. It will be interesting to see after 10 yrs in the prem (fingers crossed) how we feel. Look at being an everton fan, i for one would love them to win the FA cup as a well run, well managed stable club

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Of course it wasn't. I don't think you understand the concept of a listed company. It's all about having the ability to give a slice of the cake to shareholders.

 

I do understand that concept - and how it fits with football depends on who the shareholders are - if genuine fans, they can vote that any dividends are reinvested in the club... in our case it was divided up even if only a few 100k or so. Not saying the PLC model was ideal, but it did give fans a chance to won a bit of the club to... ? Privately owened by a good owner - perfect, but privately owned by a bad owner and no way of getting rid of them... swings and roundabouts

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its hard to argue pro lowe when the clbu ended up gping in to administration. That said there are similarities with the "sustainable" approach Lowe was in some areas promoting. Its what Madejski has been trying to provide at reading and although its not always exhilerating for the fans it provides a nice stability and when you get somewhere youve really earnt it. COmparing Lowe and COrtese (not the OP but others) is a waste of time. COrtese is amazing but a very different set up. Adkins has been brilliant (im an Adkins luvvie for sure) but anyone who has played league sport at any level will know that a winning team is far easier to play in and manage than a losing team. Starting the new generation in League 1 rather than hanging on th coat tails of the prem could have been an advantage in some areas. It will be interesting to see after 10 yrs in the prem (fingers crossed) how we feel. Look at being an everton fan, i for one would love them to win the FA cup as a well run, well managed stable club

 

Totally agree with that - UI guess the point , sadly missed by some, is that a steady breakeven policy is not going to yield the sort of rapid progress we have made these last two seasons - it will be interseting to see how the fans react to this, given that last time we followed such a policy we turned on the board (fair enough there wa splenty of other junk to jsutify that, but thi was any area that came up frequently)

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Let's not argue about how badly the money was spent, or the number and frequency of managerial change, nor his arrogance etc - different issues and ones that have been done to detah, but was he right in the financial management

 

Of course he was right to try and balance the books (screamingly obvious to anyone outside portsmouth) but you can't separate spending money badly and financial management. The club was poorly managed full stop, hence two relegations and administration.

 

For example, if a Championship club on limited income spends 500K on a rugby coach that does the square root of **** all that is not managing finances very well.

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lmfao.........all this talk about Lowe ruining Saints finances. This was all done by WIlde and co (who 90%+ of our fanbase thought was a messiah) and by the time he came back to try and turn things round we were shot because of the amssive overspend by Wilde and his cronies. Relegation happens although it could have been perhaps avoided if we had gotten Hoddle back. Lets face it, Strachan took us as far as he could and as has been shown elsewhere he has a very limited shelf life.

 

This shows we have to be sustainable......right now we're ok and looking good but, if something happened and there was no more money to subsidise us we would be right up the creek without a paddle.

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Lowe did some wise things like getting us into SMS and improving the training ground facility - both these things would eventually prove to be attractive propositions for eventual investent. The problem is the money came from borrowing while in the Prem. Due to the PLC model, commensurate money to spend on better players would not be made available (our top Academy prospects were not ready yet) and a succession of panic hiring of managers led to a squad of dross. And as a result the business and the football failed.

 

Lowe did one thing particularly WRONG - he did not sell the club when it needed big investment to move on. The key point for Cortese will be how to deal with necessary investment when in the Prem. There will be a period of time before we see another Bale or Walcott come through the ranks and want to stay and feast with Saints at the top table. This interim period may require purchasing some better players and it will be very interesting to see if and how this happens.

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Was not really meant to be a debate about all the releagtion and the turmoil that followed really... maybe I was naive, but I was just interested whether with the benefit of hindsight and seeing how well we are run now, but with the potential for promotion and teh need to self sustaining in the future (as indicated by NC) the attitude to a financial model of 'prudence' had changed at all. It was just ONE of the areas Lowe was heavily disliked for... does anyone look back on teh 10 years before relagation and admit taht maybe form a financial perspective he got that bit more or less right or not?

 

Goes without saying that we could have spent the money we did alot better had we had the consistency of management eveyone knew was vital - but again that shows another aspect of football fan culture that is always a paradox - we expect 2 things: a) that the board show some balls and ensure mangerial stability and 2) back the manager with cash appropriately.... yet at the same time, call for sackings regularly when results dont go our way, and frequently expect spending without considering wher the money is coming from...

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OK Frank. The answer is Yes. Lowe was right.

 

BUT

 

You should have tightened the definition.

 

Lowe WAS right about the "Concept of Sustainability and Investment in Infrastructure for the Future" That included an understanding of the need for Sports Science.

That is a no brainer, non negotiable HE WAS RIGHT.

 

Unfortunately he was an Egotistical fool who did NOT listen to advice and believed that HE had invented that concept and did NOT listen to others who held opnions on the subject, knowledge of the subject or Experience in the subject.

 

He was, possibly one of the worst examples of why a Businessman should have his ego Surgically removed BEFORE being allowed to enter football.

 

He WAS right, because MANY others are doing the same thing.

 

HOWEVER his Implementation of it was flawed. His pandering to his ego caused him to be flawed and he failed, and was always going to fail, because he did NOT have Trusted Advisors around him.

 

Oh and it wasn't actually his idea.

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OK Frank. The answer is Yes. Lowe was right.

 

BUT

 

You should have tightened the definition.

 

Lowe WAS right about the "Concept of Sustainability and Investment in Infrastructure for the Future" That included an understanding of the need for Sports Science.

That is a no brainer, non negotiable HE WAS RIGHT.

 

Unfortunately he was an Egotistical fool who did NOT listen to advice and believed that HE had invented that concept and did NOT listen to others who held opnions on the subject, knowledge of the subject or Experience in the subject.

 

He was, possibly one of the worst examples of why a Businessman should have his ego Surgically removed BEFORE being allowed to enter football.

 

He WAS right, because MANY others are doing the same thing.

 

HOWEVER his Implementation of it was flawed. His pandering to his ego caused him to be flawed and he failed, and was always going to fail, because he did NOT have Trusted Advisors around him.

 

Oh and it wasn't actually his idea.

 

....is the right answer.

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OK Frank. The answer is Yes. Lowe was right.

 

BUT

 

You should have tightened the definition.

 

Lowe WAS right about the "Concept of Sustainability and Investment in Infrastructure for the Future" That included an understanding of the need for Sports Science.

That is a no brainer, non negotiable HE WAS RIGHT.

 

Unfortunately he was an Egotistical fool who did NOT listen to advice and believed that HE had invented that concept and did NOT listen to others who held opnions on the subject, knowledge of the subject or Experience in the subject.

 

He was, possibly one of the worst examples of why a Businessman should have his ego Surgically removed BEFORE being allowed to enter football.

 

He WAS right, because MANY others are doing the same thing.

 

HOWEVER his Implementation of it was flawed. His pandering to his ego caused him to be flawed and he failed, and was always going to fail, because he did NOT have Trusted Advisors around him.

 

Oh and it wasn't actually his idea.

 

True, cant argue with that - but I was thinking more about the money issue - are we now more likely to be satisfied with self sustaining slower progress that limited investment provides, or will we be calling for the board to be ousted and spend some feckin money themoment we struggle?

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True' date=' cant argue with that - but I was thinking more about the money issue - are we now more likely to be satisfied with self sustaining slower progress that limited investment provides, or will we be calling for the board to be ousted and spend some feckin money themoment we struggle?[/quote']

 

 

:lol:

 

Oh come on. You honestly believe the entire upper row of the Northam all just acquired MBA's simply because we are currently challenging for promotion?

Give it another 3 weeks and the first HCDAJFU thread will appear demanding we pay 40 million for some numpty with a bad attitude that nobody outside of FM12 has ever heard of or seen play.

 

Scousers, Villians et al have all been off on a sack the board. Jeez Arsene is only hanging on by the skin of his teeth thanks to their recent run if the press are to be deserved with Gooners wanting him gone and spending a zillion..

 

It's why the FPP should be in NOW

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I still think that if Lowe had got the decision right when he appointed Gray things would be oh so different.Wasn't it at that time that he turned Harry down for the first time and Moyes amonst others,then spent nay wasted about 4 million £ on that useless lump Tinman.Coupled with the pay off for Gray and his useless sidekick Wadsworth the 6 million or so wasted their crippled us financially for years to come.Lowe was prudent...except for in that short period,he adopted corner shop economics for the most but could resist a flashy Rolex when he was passing the jewellers.

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the recent activity down the road has made Rupert look like some sort of financial genius but he clearly wasn't, let's not forget how his claim to fame was giving Nick Leeson his first job.

 

His policy of building the academy and securing a new ground was excellent.

Negotiating the most expensive funding package and mortgage deal in history was not.

 

The lack of transparency with the accounts over director's 'fees and expenses' didn't fill me with confidence either, and as time went on it became apparent that Rupert didn't understand the connection between the business, and what happens on the pitch.

The drop in revenue post-relegation was easily predictable yet no action was taken.

His return to look after his own interests was damaging.

 

He made some very poor decisions and he lost his 'customers' in great numbers - that final chaotic and misguided stumble into a points penalty summed up his tenure.

 

Let's not pretend he was all bad, some of his plan was sensible and he had integrity of some sort, he was just poor at his job.

 

The one that always makes me laugh is when people say none of this would've happened had we re-appointed Glenn Hoddle, the man who not only walked out on us, but a man who has failed at EVERY job since.

 

But thankfully, Rupert and anyone else who failed to turn the ship around are all ancient history, just little toilet breaks on the crazy route map that has brought us to sanity.

 

 

Re the present, IF we manage to go up, I would be happy to see us battling around 13th/15th, consolidating, but a relegation battle is likely.

We've had a fantastic couple of years, I would be saddened if April's hero manager turned into November's sacking amid unreasonable fan expectation.

 

So there will need to be a fan reality check on our status, both on and off the pitch.

Those impatient people who demand we hoof the ball up the pitch everyone time we get it, or who think we can sign Tevez, they need to wise up.

 

Nicola and Nige know what they're doing, so stop shouting sh)t from the sidelines.

They'll spend what we can, but we won't storm another division.

 

 

 

 

Yet.:)

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Lowe's self-proclaimed attempt to change the laws of football physics meant that, PLC aside, he'd created an especially fragile species. Things would work on his sustainability model only so long as all the important decisions were right. And for a short time, they were. But when bad decisions were made about managers and squad (quality and quantity), the whole thing came crashing down.

 

Lowe was just not good enough for Lowe - and we almost lost our club as a result.

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Had we been taken over by people like Marcus and Cortese in '97 instead of Lowe, we would be in a far better position than we are now.Lowe was 2 bob, running retirement homes. I dont know where this "good businessman" line comes from. He was not in the same league as people like Madejski. I thought the whole reason for the reverse takeover was to fund a new ground, it didn't take a genius to do decide we needed a new stadium and build one.

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I thought it was only £6m WGS wanted to pay for Saha and Malbranque. Even so RL sacrificed a small short term gain for a considerable loss in turnover and WGS when we got relegated. That was nonsensical and showed lack of good business acumen.

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Rupert problems started when he put the Shareholders before the Football Club.

 

Compare it with Apple, they have only just paying dividends again (since 1995). They BUILT up the company and re-invested their profits in the company.

 

Here are some of Rupert's Share buybacks + dividends, when reading remember that Steve (Out of his depth) Wigley was appointed on the 23 Aug 2004.

 

Rupert's Share Buybacks

28 Sept 2004 Share buyback - 450,000 at 44p

http://www2.hemscott.com/scripts/AFXnewstory.dll/text?EPIC=SOO&SerialNumber=359&NewsType=CDP&Indate=28/09/2004

10 Oct 2002 Share buyback - 1,120,00 at 24p

http://www2.hemscott.com/scripts/AFXnewstory.dll/text?EPIC=SOO&SerialNumber=1637&NewsType=CDP&Indate=14/10/2002

19 June 2002 Share buyback - 2,746,153 at 30p

http://www2.hemscott.com/scripts/AFXnewstory.dll/text?EPIC=SOO&SerialNumber=2186&NewsType=CDP&Indate=19/06/2002

14 May 2002 Share Buyback - 400,000 at 30p

http://www2.hemscott.com/scripts/AFXnewstory.dll/text?EPIC=SOO&SerialNumber=2794&NewsType=AFR&Indate=14/05/2002

 

Some of Rupert's Dividend payments

3 Sept 2004 - 3p per share

http://www2.hemscott.com/scripts/AFXnewstory.dll/text?EPIC=SOO&SerialNumber=358&NewsType=CDP&Indate=03/09/2004

3 Sept 2003 - 3p per share

http://www2.hemscott.com/scripts/AFXnewstory.dll/text?EPIC=SOO&SerialNumber=446&NewsType=CDP&Indate=03/09/2003

 

I have others including a Dividend Payment when we were relegated from the PL !!!!

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Of course he was right to try and balance the books (screamingly obvious to anyone outside portsmouth) but you can't separate spending money badly and financial management. The club was poorly managed full stop, hence two relegations and administration.

 

As you say please don't confuse the concept of financial management with the reality of a poorly executed plan.

 

Point of order on FCs point 6, when Lowe spoke about £20m, £25m, £30m (the figure changed regularly) to replace him he was talking about someone coming in and buying the Club in its entirety. Heard it regularly from the horses mouth and would regularly point out that that would be a decision for the shareholders, not him with his 6% or so holding.

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Rupert was right and therefore successful if the goal was standing still at best, moving backwards as the expectation.

 

What we're doing now is the exact opposite of what Lowe did when it really mattered - we're investing for the future. After our FA Cup run and highest league finish, Lowe should have invested in the squad to consolidate our position. He didn't, we went backwards all the way to -10 in L1.

 

Today, now, we're investing for next season. We've been investing for next season for three seasons and, shock-horror, we've moved forward. Yes, the spending is at a higher than normal rate, but when (next season, the season after perhaps) we are in the Prem and have secured our position, our spending levels will even out a bit. We will hopefully have a stable Prem squad and will only need to add occasionally, rather than in the numbers we have done now.

 

This current level of spending is not permanent, but is definitely needed if we want to move forwards. Fortunately the spending is coming partly form the club, partly from the clubs owners, but we have no debt to service and seemingly more money to come. What's so bad about that?

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Rupert was right and therefore successful if the goal was standing still at best, moving backwards as the expectation.

 

What we're doing now is the exact opposite of what Lowe did when it really mattered - we're investing for the future. After our FA Cup run and highest league finish, Lowe should have invested in the squad to consolidate our position. He didn't, we went backwards all the way to -10 in L1.

 

Today, now, we're investing for next season. We've been investing for next season for three seasons and, shock-horror, we've moved forward. Yes, the spending is at a higher than normal rate, but when (next season, the season after perhaps) we are in the Prem and have secured our position, our spending levels will even out a bit. We will hopefully have a stable Prem squad and will only need to add occasionally, rather than in the numbers we have done now.

 

This current level of spending is not permanent, but is definitely needed if we want to move forwards. Fortunately the spending is coming partly form the club, partly from the clubs owners, but we have no debt to service and seemingly more money to come. What's so bad about that?

 

We're Saints fans.

 

NOTHING good ever happens to us.

 

We simply cannot believe it and (to our credit unlike some) do actually ask questions of it

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Had we been taken over by people like Marcus and Cortese in '97 instead of Lowe, we would be in a far better position than we are now.Lowe was 2 bob, running retirement homes. I dont know where this "good businessman" line comes from. He was not in the same league as people like Madejski. I thought the whole reason for the reverse takeover was to fund a new ground, it didn't take a genius to do decide we needed a new stadium and build one.

 

agreed Lowes business was smaller than SFC he was a pawn in Askham's money making scheme.

a good businessman, as NC is showing, would have realised that you had to have a good main product, ie first team, before building up other parts of the business.

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We're Saints fans.

 

NOTHING good ever happens to us.

 

We simply cannot believe it and (to our credit unlike some) do actually ask questions of it

 

As with everything in life, you see what you expect to see. Many of our fans expect bad times and so when something bad happens, their immediate action is to say I told you so (or, I told you we will finish 17th...).

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It made me laugh how Rupert bought the radio station. The representative of the radio station rocked up at St Marys and entered Lowe's office. Without giving the bloke a chance to speak old ruddy cheeks made an offer - take it of leave it. The representative took it because it was more than he was going to ask.

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let's not forget his parting gift to us..

left announcing the administration too late, and we incurred the penalty the following season..

Not only fooked us over for his last season but made sure we started off the following season at a disadvantage as well

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let's not forget his parting gift to us..

left announcing the administration too late, and we incurred the penalty the following season..

Not only fooked us over for his last season but made sure we started off the following season at a disadvantage as well

 

That was him cutting off his nose to spite his face. He'd been done un like a kipper with the ramped share price and this was his parting shot.

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What's he up to these days? In a strange way, I sort of miss him, like a pantomime villain, with his rhino skin and smug smile throughout all the abuse. Swing Lowe ....

 

W H Ireland shares up 76% this year...

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F**k me, some people really cant let go....

 

And what a truly splendid time to dig this sh*t up again.

 

No... What we need is for someone to resurrect a thread about Lambert having an operation when the club, the manager and the website have publicly denied it...

Oh...

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