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Wrexham find out if they are taken over by Hollywood stars

Wrexham find out if they are taken over by much loved Hollywood stars Ryan Reynolds and fellow buddy and actor Rob McElhenney.

The duo recently presented exciting plans and intentions to buy the National League club and a decision had been revealed by trust members.

Speaking to around 2,000 members of the Supporters’ Trust on Sunday evening, Reynolds and McElhenney outlined their vision as part of their takeover bid before hosting a Q&A.

They confirmed that they have intentions to make a documentary as part of buying the Welsh outfit, plan to get to Wales ‘as much as possible’ and ‘drink with fans’ at matches.

The Wrexham Supporters Trust Board would like to thank all members who took the time to vote and take part in the process relating to the Extraordinary Ballot. There was a significant turnout for the ballot at 91.5%.

A statement read: “We are now in a position to confirm the result of the vote, which has been independently verified by Mi-Voice, the company assisting the Trust in the process. As can be seen in full detail below, members have voted FOR all three resolutions.

“As such – subject to final agreement, league and FA confirmation – the RR McReynolds Company, LLC will take 100% control of Wrexham Football Club Limited from the WST.

“Both parties will now proceed with finalising the details of the takeover, and we will update Wrexham supporters as soon as we can.

“The Wrexham Supporters Trust Board would like to thank Mr Rob McElhenney and Mr Ryan Reynolds, and their advisors Inner Circle Sports and Walker Morris, for their professional and considered approach and for the time they have already put into the process.

“As Wrexham supporters, we would like to wish them the very best of luck in charge of our Football Club and look forward to what the future brings.

“We would also like to thank our advisors, Sheridans, Mackenzie Jones, BDO and Rob Parry, for their assistance throughout the process.

“Finally, to WST members, we would like to thank you for all your support since we took control of the Football Club in 2011.

“We will update supporters in due course as to the future plans for the Wrexham Supporters Trust.

The Board of the Wrexham Supporters Trust

“WST Extraordinary Ballot: Result of resolutions

“Resolution 1

THAT the Rules be amended by adding a new Rule 4.7 as follows: “promoting and supporting the long term future of the Club which shall include a transaction to sell the entire issued share capital of the Club to new owners resulting in the Society ceasing to own or operate the Club provided that the members have approved the sale by extraordinary resolution (a “Members Approved Sale”), and in the event of a Members Approved Sale, the object at this Rule 4.7 shall take precedence and prevail over the objects at Rules 4.1 to 4.6 so that a Members Approved Sale shall be permitted by the Society’s objects and be in accordance with the Rules notwithstanding any inconsistency or conflict with the objects at Rules 4.1 to 4.6”;

For: 1809
Against: 26
Abstain: 9
98.6% voted in favour, Resolution passed

PLANS

“Sports is storytelling and is so woven into the fabric of the sport,” Reynolds explained. “The Wrexham community is incredibly dynamic and supportive.”

McElhenney, who has put in plenty of research into the club’s history, added: “Why would we not document this? Why would we not think about Wrexham the way Manchester United thinks about Manchester United?

“I’ve watched all the football documentaries and been inspired by them.”

James Harrison of the Supporters’ Trust featured alongside the two actors on Zoom and they were put to a number of questions from their intentions, investment plans and how far they feel the fifth tier club can go.

“We are taking this venture very seriously,” Reynolds said. “Why Wrexham? We believe your club is a sleeping giant, incredible story, stadium and fans. The sky is the limit. We want Wrexham to be a global force.”

“We believe the club should be back playing league football as fast as we can do it,” McElhenney added.

“We will invest as much as we can financially and emotionally. I’m competitive and I want to win.”

In the one hour that the call lasted, 100s of questions were put to the duo, covering a range of topics including cash flow, paid roles at the club and whether they had an interest in investing in women’s football.

“It’s getting popular all over the world,” Reynolds said on the latter. “We’d be idiots not to recognise that. We want to foster and grow a women’s team too.”

The Zoom call will also be part of the documentary – as long as they get the approval by 75 per cent of fans to continue their takeover.

Voting opened to the 2,108 members on Monday the 9th of November and Reynolds and McElhenney has since discovered their fate when the result was announced on Monday the 16th of November.

“We had people looking all over Western Europe for a club, we wanted a community that we could identify with,” he said. “We want to help build out and foster an infrastructure that will succeed. The team doesn’t belong to us, it belongs to a community.”

Reynolds and McElhenney plan to ‘acquire the entire issued share capital of Wrexham AFC Limited for one peppercorn’, before going on to invest £2million in the form of non-redeemable shares.

“It is a cash injection, no loans,” Reynolds stressed. “We want the club to be sustainable. We want to build this club out, thoughtfully and carefully.

“We don’t pretend to know better than the supporters. It’s a learning process for us, we are here to bolster the club with financial support and grow.’

Both of the stars don’t have any previous experience in running a football club, so it’s beneficial to bring in a CEO with ‘experience at a high level of a club’.

Reynolds adds: “I don’t have vast experience as a club owner. I want to take time to get to know the workings of the club.

“There’s a good chance to bring in increased revenue with increased exposure. We’re not getting into this to make money but because we like building things.

McElhenney said: “Everything we do will be informed by the four principles. We will provide comprehensive financial support. We want to build a sustainable model. We want the best staff. We will hire a proper CEO experienced at running a club at the high level. And if we play Chester again, we will beat them!”

As part of the offer, Reynolds and McElheeney plans include entering into a sub-lease of the Racecourse Ground, home of Wrexham,  for a period of 25 years. The annual rent of that sub-lease, controlled by the Supporters’ Trust, would stand at £115,000 per year.

The club has a huge amount of history, playing in their usual red and the design of the badge is controlled by the Supporters’ Trust. If McElhenney and Reynolds wanted to change any of that, something we can’t see happening, they would need prior sign-off.

Wrexham winger Paul Rutherford spoke enthusiastically of the potential takeover.

“It is mad, it probably puts the cherry on top of 2020 but in a good way,” he told The Leader.

“It is an exciting time for the club and I think it is a great opportunity for the two investors to get hold of a football club with a big history, big reputation but also big potential as well. It could be a marriage made in heaven and I really hope that it works out to be that.”

Reynolds and McElhenney were revealed after a Special General Meeting for Supporters’ Trust members two months ago which saw a unanimous 97.5 per cent (1,223 members) vote in favour of allowing the Trust to talk with the potential investors.

 RYAN AND ROBS STATEMENT:

To the supporters, staff, players, friends and family of Wrexham AFC: 

We’re two people who’ve made a career of never taking ourselves too seriously. However, we realise taking stewardship of this great and storied club is an incredibly serious matter and something we don’t take lightly. With that in mind, we wanted to take you through our Goal, Principles and Promises.

Our Goal

Our goal is to grow the team, return it to the EFL in front of increased attendances at an improved stadium while making a positive difference to the wider community in Wrexham.

Guiding Principles

If permitted, we’d chase that goal guided by four essential principles. 

1. To protect the heritage that has made Wrexham AFC and the Racecourse Ground such a special place to watch football for the last 156 years.

2. To reinforce the values, traditions and legacy of this community. We understand and respect the intense loyalty and love for this club and how it’s woven into the fabric of the town and its supporters. 

3. To use our resources to grow the exposure of the club. Of course, this would be in concert with protecting the heart and spirit of a community-led historical icon. But why can’t the third oldest club in the world have a global appeal?  

4. To reward the faith of the supporters who have stood by Wrexham AFC through its history by putting everything we have towards what all fans want most for their club, and that is to…

WIN, WIN, WIN. 

Everything we do will be informed by these four principles and never one without the other. We want to be part of Wrexham’s story, not drag the club into ours. 

Hard Promises

Provide comprehensive financial support for the manager and his coaching team. Build a sustainable model which will attract the best players and best staff to the Racecourse Ground.

Always beat Chester.*

Explore the renovation of the Racecourse Ground and improve the venue for the club, for International matches and perhaps, the occasional Tom Jones gig.

Invest in a permanent training facility that is worthy of an EFL club.

Guarantee the club cannot be relocated, renamed or rebranded. Appropriate and respectful observance of the Gresford Colliery Disaster will remain sacrosanct. 

Recognising the role fans and the WST have played in stewarding the club through extremely difficult times, we will create an honorary board that includes fans, representatives of the WST and WAFC alongside our own advisors.

Ensure the continued presence of Dixie McNeil as the club’s honorary President, subject to his desire.

Always beat Chester.*

Expand club staff to take advantage of increased interest in Wrexham, both locally and internationally.

Recognise and reinforce Wrexham AFC’s role as a leading force for community good in the town. Work with the Club’s Disability Liaison Officer, Kerry Evans to retain and enhance Wrexham’s reputation as an inclusive and forward-thinking club, alongside other important local groups such as the Racecourse Community Foundation, food banks and schools.

Commit to a more ecologically-sustainable version of the club and stadium.

Commit to transparent decision making with regular and open communication.

Ensure that when the day comes that we leave the Club, it will be in a better position than it is today.

ALWAYS BEAT CHESTER.*

Under any other circumstance, we’d be in Wrexham right now, touring the Racecourse Ground, having a pint with supporters in person. But 2020 has other plans for us all. We hope you’ll put your trust in us, because we’ll work every day, for as long as you’ll have us, to ensure the world knows that Wrexham is the name.

*If we ever play Chester again. Rob and Ryan

– STATEMENT ENDS –

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