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BBC Scotland's Roddy Forsyth
"David Murray has been more than ingenious in finding investors for Rangers"
 real 28k

BBC Scotland's Alan Mackay reports
"Alongside the belt-tightening, an ambition to spend and spend remains"
 real 28k

Thursday, 30 March, 2000, 18:02 GMT 19:02 UK
Rangers to raise record investment
Rangers' main objective is to improve in Europe
Rangers Football Club has announced plans to raise more than 53m through a new share issue.

The money generated will be used to improve the club squad and to develop a strong youth policy through a new Youth Academy.

Approximately 20m will come from South African-based businessman, Dave King, who is originally from Castlemilk in Glasgow.

David Murray: 32m investment
Mr King joins the board as a non-executive director, while Douglas Odam has been appointed finance director.

Mr King, a lifelong supporter of the team, said: "I'm delighted to be making this investment.

"With a capital investment of this kind, we believe Rangers can very quickly move on to a new level.

"As a fan, I'm delighted to be involved in this way."

Club chairman David Murray detailed the rights issue in a letter to existing shareholders.

He stressed that the club's main objectives were to continue to improve performance on the European stage while increasing revenue through existing and new media, such as the internet.

His own company, Murray Sports, has committed to take up its rights under the new share issue, representing an investment of 32.3m.

Squad investment

The 20m investment by Mr King's Ben Nevis Holdings, is part of that figure.

Mr Murray said Rangers wanted to reduce their reliance on short-term borrowing, which has risen substantially in recent years due to continued investment in improving the squad.

At the end of February, the club's bank borrowings stood at 48m, having invested 54.8m in players in the three financial periods up to June 1999.

Rangers want greater success
Mr Murray attributed that to the impact of increased investment by media companies in Europe's biggest clubs and the Bosman ruling, leading to significant increases in transfer fees and salaries.

He also announced an intention to seek a flotation of Rangers in the near future, subject to market conditions.

At present, none of Rangers' shares is available to buy on the stock market.

The club reported a turnover of 29.8m for the six months to 31 December 1999, an increase of almost 40% on the same period in the previous year.

Trading profit for the period was 112,000, an improvement on the 3m loss incurred 12 months previously.

However, the retained loss for the period, after player registrations, interest and tax, was 9.2m.

Tyson plan knocked out

Meanwhile, plans to play host to boxer Mike Tyson have been shelved after a date could not be agreed.

Representatives of Tyson's promoter Frank Warren visited Ibrox in the hope of arranging the heavyweight's first fight on Scottish soil.

But the dates put forward by the boxer's team clashed with the beginning of the new football season and talks broke down.

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26 Mar 00 | Scottish Premier
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