CORK City chairman Declan Carey was pleased that the club’s first digital AGM went off without a hitch – technical or from the virtual ‘floor’.
Due to Covid-19 restrictions, the club AGM was held remotely on Sunday but members of Foras, the supporters’ trust which runs City, gave a positive reception, no doubt helped by the board of management’s optimistic outlook.
“The meeting was a great success,” Carey says.
“We’re looking positive from a financial aspect. A lot will have to go wrong for things to really go pear-shaped for us. We’re confident that we’ve employed the right risk-management approach to prevent things from happening.
“We have good reporting protocols with our staff, accountants and auditors so that issues can be spotted earlier. If necessary, we can then activate various levers if things aren’t going to plan.
“We feel that we’re in a very strong position and it’s good for us now finally as a board that we feel we’re in control of our own destiny. We’ve set the budget for 2020 and we work day in, day out with Neale Fenn and all of the operations staff, headed up by Éanna Buckley so that we know how well the club is performing.
“We’ve set the club up in such a way that it’s in a sustainable position for the short and medium term and we’ll take it from there.”
While the meeting was told that more money must be raised in order for the proposed Glanmire training ground to come to fruition, City are at least in a position where they are not under pressure to move from their current Bishopstown base.
“We continue to work with any relevant parties to try to get the project expedited,” he says.
“We gave members an update on the latest status but it’s nothing that hasn’t already been communicated. It needs matched funding from the FAI.
“We’ve met with McCarthy Developments in terms of Bishopstown so we’ll be there for at least another 12 months. They’ve given us positive news that, if anything starts there, we’ll be given 12 months’ notice.
“We’ve a great relationship with them and they’ve been a big help during the Covid situation. We did a lot of work internally there and we’re hoping that we might invest more in infrastructure and training facilities – not on the scale of Glanmire but equipment that can be used to upgrade Bishopstown and then be taken with us when we do move.”
There is also good news in the offing for when supporters are allowed back into league games
“We’ll have some exciting news about hospitality facilities at Turner’s Cross,” Carey says.
“It was something that we had hoped to launch for the Sligo Rovers game, which was initially set for March 27, but construction was halted.
“We’re very excited by this, it’s involving a new partner for the club as well, a high-profile, Cork-based business which helps to strengthen the club’s community links. We’ll make a big deal about this when the time comes as it does deserve it.”