Hello Dundee fans across the globe. We here at Dundee FC hope that this update finds you and your families to be safe and healthy during this implausible pandemic.
Here at the club we have been working diligently, doing all we can to sustain the club for future generations. It has not been easy negotiating our way through an unprecedented situation, but we were committed to keeping our staff fully paid throughout the brunt of the crisis, topping up their wages whilst furloughed. Since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic we have lost out on revenues equating to over a half a million pounds. Although we have a start date for the 2020/21 season, there is no clear indication of when we will be able to have you, the life blood of Dundee Football Club, back in your seats. Some optimists think the stands can be filled in October. Others say it is likely to be in 2021. Either way there has been, and there will continue to be, a significant and unsustainable stress on the club’s finances.
Our latest budgets show that in addition to the half-million pound loss for the shortened 2019/20 season, our revenues for the upcoming season will be more than halved as a result of the measures taken to contain coronavirus. While we have the strongest possible bespoke resilience wording in our insurance policy, we do not expect to see any initial payment on our current insurance quantum until the Financial Conduct Authority obtains a ruling from the High Court. This hearing will determine the extent of liability the individual insurers have and is scheduled for late July/early August. It is our sincere hope that the insurance comes through, and for the full amount claimed, but unfortunately there are no guarantees for any of it. In the event that our claim is successful, we will be in a stronger financial position; however, it will be months before we recover our loss of revenue from the past financial year, and it is likely we will not be able to collect on this financial year’s losses until well into the 20/21 season.
This is the grim reality of what we are facing. The continued uncertainty, coupled with the restrictions on the club (and on our other means of resource that bolster the club) has resulted in an unsustainable operating cost structure. We now have tough choices that must be considered to reduce these costs in order to protect the future of Dundee FC. With less than half our revenues anticipated to be received in the 20/21 season, our club’s operations are under review. The club may need to pause several functions until it is financially prudent to resume. Thus starts the difficult conversations, the results of which will have an impact on our people, those whom we have always tried to take care of over the past seven years. We will be entering into a period of consultation with them to discuss the consequentials as the club braces for the future.
Already, you have shown why we have the best fans in football with your support of Dee Promotions Deefest Online Music Festival. You have given us a strong start in the purchase of season tickets – even when there was no way of telling what the season would look like. Two fans in particular have led the way to helping the club survive this upcoming season. Life-long supporter Doug Robertson and Crown Engineering have stepped up and dug deep to become the club’s main sponsor at a time where the sponsorship market is almost non-existent. Happy MonDees’ Scott Roberts also took the initiative to contact us regarding sponsorship possibilities that would allow them to raise money for the club while acknowledging the great work done by the NHS. This has resulted in a ‘Thank you NHS and key workers’ badge on all the players sleeves. Through his efforts he has already raised over £7,500 for the club and the local NHS Roxburghe House.
We cannot thank all of you enough for your contributions and willingness to help out the club you love. It really is inspiring. Everyone can do their part, in their own special way, to support the club during this crisis and it can be as simple as purchasing that new season ticket. All your efforts go a long way to boost Dundee FC during this strange and difficult time. We see you, and we appreciate you all.
John Nelms, Managing Director, and the Board of Directors.