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New Finance Director
http://darlofc.co.uk/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=37266
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Author:  Darlogramps [ Fri Feb 08, 2019 10:15 am ]
Post subject:  New Finance Director

Welcome to the madhouse John Woolnough. Fair play to anyone willing to stick their head above the parapet.

https://darlingtonfc.co.uk/news/quakers ... e-director

Author:  Alfie [ Fri Feb 08, 2019 10:26 am ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

Seems to be just what we are looking for. A long term Darlo fan - so prepared to put the work in for nothing, but as an accountant hopefully coming at it with a hard nosed business head and able to impose the financial discipline we clearly have lacked in the past.

Also experience of working in tax havens..….

Author:  Spyman [ Fri Feb 08, 2019 10:34 am ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

Sounds an ideal addition - bags of experience in his field and a Darlington fan to boot.

I presume this is a voluntary role?

He also does not look old enough to have been watching Darlo back in 1983!

Author:  OnTheTerraces [ Fri Feb 08, 2019 10:36 am ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

I was thinking that ...... 1983 .... looks like he was born in 1993!

Author:  beatroute66 [ Fri Feb 08, 2019 12:20 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

John was in the year below me at school and is an excellent appointment.

I'm really pleased for both him and the club that this has happened.

Author:  biccynana [ Fri Feb 08, 2019 12:51 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

beatroute66 wrote:
John was in the year below me at school and is an excellent appointment.

Go on then beatroute66, is he old enough to have been watching Darlo in 1983?

Author:  beatroute66 [ Fri Feb 08, 2019 1:00 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

Well, I've recently turned 41 to give you the context.

I know he was watching games in the 89/90 season when I first started going regularly.

Maybe older relatives took him along at any early age? Perhaps he took a shine to DFC from a distance at a really young age and then started attending games a little later?

More importantly, he has a brain in his head and a passion to get involved simply for the love of it.

As we all know, there aren't many of those around!

Author:  QuakerPete [ Fri Feb 08, 2019 1:01 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

Another announcement is due course? Promising news!


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Author:  theoriginalfatcat [ Fri Feb 08, 2019 1:06 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

beatroute66 wrote:
Well, I've recently turned 41 to give you the context.

I know he was watching games in the 89/90 season when I first started going regularly.

Maybe older relatives took him along at any early age? Perhaps he took a shine to DFC from a distance at a really young age and then started attending games a little later?

More importantly, he has a brain in his head and a passion to get involved simply for the love of it.

As we all know, there aren't many of those around!



So the answer is yes :) he would of been about 5 or 6, my son was about this age when he first went to Feethams.

Author:  biccynana [ Fri Feb 08, 2019 1:19 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

beatroute66 wrote:
More importantly, he has a brain in his head and a passion to get involved simply for the love of it.

As we all know, there aren't many of those around!

Sounds like a bang up bloke and could be a very important (off the field) signing. I wish him well!

Author:  quakersfan [ Fri Feb 08, 2019 1:27 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

beatroute66 wrote:
John was in the year below me at school and is an excellent appointment.

I'm really pleased for both him and the club that this has happened.


Haha you recommended him so hopefully he should be a good appointment. Good to get an accountant onboard when tough decisions come along.

Author:  Ghost_Of_1883 [ Fri Feb 08, 2019 1:33 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

Good to see him on board but regarding the comments about being an accountant and tough decisions - please remember that tough decisions are, well, tough...and not always to the fans liking.

As we know from the tough decisions already made to make budget cuts during this season.

Author:  Wiseacre [ Fri Feb 08, 2019 1:38 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

Its probably best if he didn't watch Quakers in 1983 - we were a sorry sight for much of that season. It was Billy Elliot's last campaign and we'd sold Speedie and Skipper. The nadir was a 0-0 at home to Mansfield before 900 fans. Cyril Knowles deserves a statue somewhere for pulling that lot together. It was a shame for Elliot though I think he did a lot for the club.

Author:  quakersfan [ Fri Feb 08, 2019 1:47 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

Ghost_Of_1883 wrote:
Good to see him on board but regarding the comments about being an accountant and tough decisions - please remember that tough decisions are, well, tough...and not always to the fans liking.

As we know from the tough decisions already made to make budget cuts during this season.


It’s a fine line getting the budget right, to low you can’t compete and crowds drop. I suppose it depends on how much people put into BTB as well. Budget this year was good and we have sold a number of players so hopefully our debt position will be the best it’s been moving into a new season we just have to ensure we stay up.

Author:  QuakerPete [ Fri Feb 08, 2019 1:59 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

Ghost_Of_1883 wrote:
Good to see him on board but regarding the comments about being an accountant and tough decisions - please remember that tough decisions are, well, tough...and not always to the fans liking.

As we know from the tough decisions already made to make budget cuts during this season.

It is tough, but the more we are forewarned then the more we can take control of current and future events


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Author:  bga [ Fri Feb 08, 2019 2:17 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

Alfie wrote:
Seems to be just what we are looking for. A long term Darlo fan - so prepared to put the work in for nothing, but as an accountant hopefully coming at it with a hard nosed business head and able to impose the financial discipline we clearly have lacked in the past.

Also experience of working in tax havens..….

...........maybe he will listen to the moans about BM and we will relocate and become Jersey Quakers or something? I personally think BM is our best option for the foreseeable future, the only bad match day experience I have had there, has been some of our results!

Author:  OnTheTerraces [ Fri Feb 08, 2019 2:25 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

It will be interesting to see what he comes up with and how the club is operated going forward.

Will it be operated based on not losing money at the expense of the playing side or will there be some consideration to the fans to deliver what we are all after ... entertaining football.

Author:  bga [ Fri Feb 08, 2019 2:34 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

OnTheTerraces wrote:
It will be interesting to see what he comes up with and how the club is operated going forward.

Will it be operated based on not losing money at the expense of the playing side or will there be some consideration to the fans to deliver what we are all after ... entertaining football.

I would hope any business is based on "not losing money" let alone a Football Club?

Author:  OnTheTerraces [ Fri Feb 08, 2019 2:35 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

football clubs seem to be in their own bubble ........ away from rational thoughts and sound business sense

Author:  Ghost_Of_1883 [ Fri Feb 08, 2019 2:41 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

OnTheTerraces wrote:
football clubs seem to be in their own bubble ........ away from rational thoughts and sound business sense


Yes but with no one to cover losses, then we can only be operated based on not losing money.

Author:  PierremontQuaker03 [ Sat Feb 09, 2019 10:39 am ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

Congratulations to him on this appointment - I don't envy him however.
I know as a fellow chartered accountant this is going to be very tough to balance the books.
I would forget about all the business about Hedge funds etc - that is managing other peoples money - Darlo FC do not have any money. I am more pleased with the fact he has had the balls to set up his own business so he will know the trials and tribulations of doing this.
Darlington FC finances is going to be a tough job - but the fact we have an FD in place means that we have got a numbers guy involved in the business who is able to contribute and work of the future strategy of how we become more sustainable.

Author:  Darlo_Pete [ Sun Feb 10, 2019 1:52 am ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

Being a Darlo fan will mean that he knows what the club is all about. It sounds a very promising appointment.

Author:  divas [ Sun Feb 10, 2019 9:10 am ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

PierremontQuaker03 wrote:
Congratulations to him on this appointment - I don't envy him however.
I know as a fellow chartered accountant this is going to be very tough to balance the books.
I would forget about all the business about Hedge funds etc - that is managing other peoples money - Darlo FC do not have any money. I am more pleased with the fact he has had the balls to set up his own business so he will know the trials and tribulations of doing this.
Darlington FC finances is going to be a tough job - but the fact we have an FD in place means that we have got a numbers guy involved in the business who is able to contribute and work of the future strategy of how we become more sustainable.


The most important thing is that he listens to advice from the current directors and DFCSG who have now been around long enough to know the potential issues faced by a club of our size with the ownership model we have. Many of the problems we’ve faced in the past 6/7 years have been due to new incumbents making the same mistakes of previous regimes. Stability at board level, with the relevant experience is absolute key to moving the club forwards

Author:  OnTheTerraces [ Sun Feb 10, 2019 9:29 am ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

I’m sure he’s not daft and understands the issues around the ground etc. If he decides that we need to operate within our means and rely on gate receipts and commercial income then we have to accept that is the state of the club. Any extra fan donations go straight into the playing budget.

I’m more concerned about the commercial side, we are now paying someone so I hope to see a big increase after including his wages.

Author:  divas [ Sun Feb 10, 2019 9:32 am ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

I’m positive he’s not daft. I also know that there’s been skilled people in the position both at this club and others who have been bitten on the arse because they’ve not fully considered the intricasies.

As has been pointed out above he’s got no other option than to have us operate within our means - that’s his job.

Author:  quakersfan [ Sun Feb 10, 2019 10:06 am ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

Spot on Divas that’s his profession so I’ve no doubt he will work within the budget and as a director he has to ensure DFC is not knowingly trading as insolvent.

However getting to the next level is the difficult bit, we still haven’t heard from anyone how we would fund to get into the national league with its much larger playing budget, long trips which many players couldn’t do on a part time basis.

Author:  joejaques [ Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:12 am ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

Just as an aside, Michael Owen lookalike? :roll:

Author:  divas [ Mon Feb 11, 2019 11:24 am ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

quakersfan wrote:
Spot on Divas that’s his profession so I’ve no doubt he will work within the budget and as a director he has to ensure DFC is not knowingly trading as insolvent.

However getting to the next level is the difficult bit, we still haven’t heard from anyone how we would fund to get into the national league with its much larger playing budget, long trips which many players couldn’t do on a part time basis.


It’s fairly clear that the funding to move to full time status would need to come from non matchday revenue. Whilst we could theoretically increase attendances with an improved offering both on and off the pitch the revenue is far too volatile to budget for anything more than our current average until we see as sustained increase. Fan donations into a boost the budget scheme are vital as we’re in effect the football club’s benefactor but this isn’t sustainable and should be seen more as a bonus than core revenue. Transfer fees and cup money (!) are exactly the same - bonuses which are nice when realised but can’t be relied upon. Should they be realised they should either be used to create revenue generating assets or (more likely) reduce structured debt / create future headroom.

So non matchday revenue - basically we need some way of generating significant sums of money that are as guaranteed as possible. The best way I’ve heard to date is the 4G pitch which has a business built around it that generates revenue regardless of how the team is doing on the pitch. I reckon we’d need an extra £150-200K per season to go full time and be competitive in the league. The sums I’ve heard from such a venture do seem to be in that ballpark.

If that can’t be realised then we’ll have to come up with another revenue generating business that can support the club otherwise we become a perennial NLN club that may from time to time be in with a chance of promotion to the next level but unable to sustain that for any period due to no increased revenue from playing at that level to sustain ourselves. Whilst teams do compete in the National League at semi pro level i imagine its very difficult and would be even more so for ourselves due to our geographic location

Author:  OnTheTerraces [ Mon Feb 11, 2019 11:51 am ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

If he is at the match on Saturday I'm going to find him and ask him what his plans are.

Author:  super_les_mcjannet [ Mon Feb 11, 2019 12:17 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: New Finance Director

OnTheTerraces wrote:
If he is at the match on Saturday I'm going to find him and ask him what his plans are.


What are you expecting from him in terms of plans?

I haven't seen his role explained in terms of key responsibilities but having just been appointed, I would be surprised if he had any concrete plans in terms of moving us forward as yet.

I would assume he will pick up a lot of the work Chris Stockdale has been completing in regards to current financials, how to fund us move up the league is probably outside of this role. However with such a small business/board then he would have some input, surely as CEO and dealing with the Sporting Village then Johnston is largely point of contact for revenue growth though?

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