LIVINGSTON have paved the way for a possible seven-figure cash injection after the club’s majority shareholders accepted ‘in principle’ an offer for their stake in the League One champions.
In a move designed to secure fresh investment in the West Lothian outfit, a group led by local businessman John Ward received approval for a change of ownership at an extraordinary general meeting at the club on Monday evening.
The directors of owners Livingston 5 Ltd, some of whom are also involved in the new company, agreed by majority to the deal, which is now subject to the prospective new owners carrying out due diligence and receiving approval from the SFA and SPFL.
It is proposed that up to £3.8 million worth of new shares will be created and offered to supporters and investors, with a statement insisting funds will be ring-fenced for the ‘development of the first-team playing squad’.
The change will see current members of the ‘operations committee’, who have been carrying out the day-to-day running of the club, formally take control.
Ward and consortium colleagues Brian Ewing and Alan Scott have been appointed directors of the club, whilst ‘outgoing’ majority shareholder Gordon Ford has been given the role of honorary vice-president and club ambassador.
It is understood that chairman Robert Wilson, Neil Hogarth and Graham Leslie, shareholders in Livingston 5, will retain their stakes in the club under the new model, but Ged Nixon and Ford will not.
Ward, whose former company Fasteq is a previous club sponsor, said: “The operations committee have steered the club through a fairly rocky time in the last few years.
“We feel it’s now in a good place in terms of being attractive to new investors.
“With promotion there should be a bit of goodwill around the town and West Lothian, and hopefully the fans embrace this move as a positive one.”