Celtic supporters group decry 'invisible chairman', call for Peter Lawwell to give up shares

By John McGinley

February 8, 2021

The Celtic Trust has updated members on recent meetings and activities with an e-mail newsletter this week.

More than 200 people attended an online meeting on 26th January to discuss ongoing issues at Celtic.

A number of members resolutions have been passed focused on calling for change at the club and putting Celtic in the best position possible to deliver on the park.

The Trust, is calling for, specifically:

  • A root and branch review of all of Celtic operations – football and non-football – to be carried out specifically with regard to the performance of the CEO and the football manager.
  • Radical changes in the football department. They say these are urgently required and should be motivated by the results of a comprehensive study of how different models operate in Europe.
  • A review of the performance and contribution of the chairman should be carried out and changes made to the composition of non-executive directors.

Jeanette Findlay, acting secretary said: “Following the deterioration in the team performance, Trust members called for a top to bottom review of club activities, from the boardroom to the pitch.

“There is a real disconnect between the corporate board and the ordinary paying fans. Public relations by the club has been shambolic with senior club officials either silent or offering ill-judged statements through the national sports media.

“The Celtic Trust has been critical of the board’s ‘stale, male and pale’ make-up. The invisible chairman, Ian Bankier, has been in post for almost a decade and there have been no meetings of the nominations committee in the last twelve months to even consider whether new blood and thinking is required in the Celtic boardroom.

“It is apparent there has been a stagnation at board level in Celtic PLC over a number of years and – while the announcement that the CEO will be retiring at the end of the season is a step in the right direction – a shake-up is long overdue for anyone with a passing knowledge of good corporate governance standards.”

As we discussed on Friday, a meeting has now been set between representatives of the Trust and the club. This will take place on February 17th after the publication of interim financial results this week.

Call for Peter Lawwell to give up shares

Trust members also passed a motion calling on outgoing Chief Executive Peter Lawwell to give his shares up to Celtic fans.

The meeting in late January discussed that the CEO currently holds about 356,000 shares constituting 0.38% of the value of Celtic Football Club.

Peter Lawwell will leave Celtic in the summer/ (Photo by Craig Williamson/SNS Group via Getty Images)

Members heard: “Celtic Football Club’s foundation is its support. The Trust calls on Peter Lawwell to pass his shares to a fan organisation capable of holding shares to enhance the influence of Celtic supporters within Celtic PLC’s corporate structure.”

The resolution was resoundingly passed.

In other news, John Collins has told the truth about Scott Brown and Celtic – he should have been replaced by now.