CHAIRMAN, Leigh Pomlett, has today issued the following Statement:
On behalf of the Board of Directors I am pleased to present the Annual Report and Accounts for the year ended 31 May 2019.
The result for the year is a trading profit of £19,000 (2018 - £9,000). In addition to this I can confirm that the Club’s borrowings reduced by a further £239,000 during the year.
This represents my first annual ‘Chairman’s Statement’ having taken over as Majority Shareholder and Chairman of Walsall Football Club on 29 July 2019 following the acquisition of a 76% Majority Shareholding from my predecessor Jeff Bonser.
As part of the deal that sees me take ownership of the Club, Jeff and I have agreed an ‘Option to Purchase' the freehold and it is my aim to reunite it with the Club at some point during my tenure.
Jeff stepped down as Chairman and Director after a 31-year involvement with the Club with his brother Robert also stepping down as a Director of the Club at the same time. I would like to take this opportunity to place on record my thanks to both Jeff and Rob and their families for their dedicated service and contribution to Walsall Football Club over the last three decades. I have inherited a stable and financially sound Club in a continuingly difficult climate in which football clubs operate and they deserve great credit for that.
It is against this backdrop that we have been able to record a profit for the 14th consecutive year, our 23rd year of profit in the last 26 years, which is in itself a significant achievement.
Sadly however, I write on the back of a difficult season which saw us part company with then Manager Dean Keates in April and ultimately be relegated to League Two for the first time in 13 years at the end of the season. This was a real disappointment for all concerned with the Club - Players, Staff, Directors and Supporters alike.
Our stated ambition is and always has been to become a sustainable Championship club, but our immediate priority must now be to secure a return to League One at the earliest possible opportunity.
Having now relinquished many of my day-to-day responsibilities relating to my career in the Supply Chain Industry I plan to dedicate significantly more of my time to the Club to drive the business forward with the aim of achieving my stated objectives.
There is a strong platform here to move this Club forward and working alongside my fellow Directors I have already made a number of strategic changes to the business and a number of key appointments. We will continue to review all aspects of the Club on an ongoing basis in order to give us the best possible opportunity to be successful both on and off the field.
I firmly believe that on the football side of the business we have made some excellent appointments at First Team level in Darrell Clarke and his team and I am confident that the Academy is in good hands following the appointment of Miguel Llera as Academy Manager.
Furthermore, it is vital that we continue to build strong relationships with our Supporters if we are to grow and prosper. Set against that backdrop, I am looking forward to a bright future for everyone connected to Walsall Football Club.
As we sign off on another year, it is very important that we recognise the fantastic support we receive from all of our Commercial Partners and Sponsors. With that in mind I would like to offer my personal thanks to those organisations and individuals who have invested in the Club over the season and have contributed towards everything we as a Club are able to achieve.
In particular, I would like to thank Marstons, HomeServe, St. Francis Group, Dains LLP, the Walsall FC Community Programme, the University of Wolverhampton, Tile Choice, SPV Group, Excel Print, Pom’s Kitchen & Deli, Barclays Bank, UK Trade Centre, Third Space Outdoor, Leamore Windows, J Harper & Sons, Guardian Support, Made in the Midlands, RayGray Snacks and Bailey & Mackey Ltd for their ongoing support.
I would like also like to commend the Community Team for their hard work within the local community and extend my gratitude towards my fellow Board members (past and present) and Staff at the Banks’s Stadium for their ongoing efforts and commitment.
Finally, on behalf of everyone at Walsall Football Club I would like to say a big thank you to the Supporters. As always, they have been exceptional during what was a very tough season and I would like to assure them all that all of our efforts are focused on achieving a swift return to League One.The full Directors’ Report and Financial
Statements are available to download here
The Annual General Meeting for Shareholders will take place in the Priory Lounge at the Banks’s Stadium at 9:00am on Monday 6th January 2020.