BY IAIN COLLIN – @CCP_sport
FORMER Rangers vice-chairman Donald Findlay QC has bought Cowdenbeath in a move designed to secure his hometown club’s future for the local community.
Findlay, already Cowdenbeath chairman, has purchased the circa 87 per cent majority shareholding in the football club from Innovate (Cowdenbeath) Ltd, the company owned by former Scotland rugby internationalist Alex Brewster and his twin brother, David.
Innovate will retain ownership of the club’s ground at Central Park but have agreed a medium-term lease to ensure the Blue Brazil continue playing at the stadium, which will also carry on hosting stock car racing.
Relegation to League Two in recent weeks, just a year after they dropped out of the Championship, has placed major strain on the club’s finances and Findlay, who last week oversaw the departure of manager Colin Nish, has described his takeover as ‘an important first step’ in rebuilding.
Findlay will hold his shareholding ‘in trust’ with a view to developing a not-for-profit model that will result in shares being redistributed to the local community in the future.
Findlay, who was born in Cowdenbeath, said in a statement: “Relegation has been a considerable blow to the ambitions I have for the club.
“We require to rebuild and my acquisition of the majority shareholding is an important first step. I am very grateful to Alex Brewster and his family making this possible.
“I am proud and humbled to be the principal shareholder of my hometown football club.
“I seek no personal gain. I have deep affection for the club and my home town, and I will hold the shares only for the benefit of both, and I am confident that, together, we can take the Blue Brazil back to the Championship.
“The future of the club at Central Park is secure. However, there is work to be done. Let’s make a start.”
Innovate bought Cowdenbeath from previous owner Gordon McDougall in 2007 but have not been involved on the club’s board since 2010 and purchasing the majority shareholding will allow Findlay more leeway in planning for the future.
A spokesman for the Brewsters said: “Innovate (Cowdenbeath) Ltd is happy to announce the sale of its majority shareholding in Cowdenbeath Football Club Ltd to Donald Findlay QC.
“Mr Findlay, a son of Cowdenbeath, will hold the shares in trust until a new not-for-profit structure is agreed by the board of directors of the football club company.
“Shares will then be redistributed to the local community as part of an ongoing equity fundraising campaign to secure the future of the Blue Brazil.”