The timetable on the future of the A-League became a little clearer yesterday with a statement from the New Leagues Working Group (NLWG).
The New Leagues Working Group was set up to formulate recommendations for the future of the A-League, W-League and Y (youth)-League (the ‘’Leagues’’).
Following work begun in October last year, the FFA and the Australian Professional Football Clubs Association (APFCA) will immediately commence the preparation of long-form agreements that reflect the NLWG recommendations for consideration and approval by the FFA Board
The NLWG recommendations will see Clubs having full and perpetual use of their intellectual property rights with the mandate to oversee the running of the Leagues . As such, Clubs will have unimpeded control of all commercial rights associated with their clubs.
Following statements made by the Australian Professional Football Clubs Association (APFCA) over the last 12 months, Wellington will be one of the 12 founding members.
The Leagues will be overseen by an independent Chairperson and a Board comprising representatives of each of the 12 Club license holders, including Wellington. Clubs will own their intellectual property rights and will have unimpeded control of all commercial rights associated with their clubs.
The management of the Leagues will be delivered by a dedicated organisation that will be transitioned from the FFA in the coming season with Clubs committing to providing the necessary capital and human resource investments.
It is anticipated that the work on the New Leagues documentation and legal structures will be completed by August, noting that it still needs final approval from the FFA board and congress but the in principle agreement has the support of the clubs, the Australian Member Federations and the Professinal Footballers Association.
Wellington Phoenix Chairman Rob Morrison said it was an important step forward in the future of the A-League.
“As both a member of the APFCA and as an owner, we are pleased and supportive of the outcomes to date that the NLWG have recommended.
‘’This is the best outcome for the A League and football in Australia, and we will continue to play our role as a contributor to the A-League and one of the foundation clubs of the League organisation going forward.
‘’We look forward to continuing to assist and invest in the development of the Leagues, building on the very good work of the NLWG to date.’’
At A Glance
· New Leagues will be run by a new Board with an independent Chairman and representatives from all 12 existing A-League clubs, including Wellington Phoenix
· Clubs will have control of all commercial rights associated with their clubs
· The Clubs will inject significant new capital in the Leagues to enhance the on-field product and bolster their marketing appeal.
· There will be an annual contribution from League revenues to the FFA for National Team programs and grassroots initiatives equal to the distribution by the League to any individual Club in the same year or a minimum of A$4.5m per year.
· FFA will receive 10% yields from the sale of new Club licenses and on the net profits from any sale of existing licenses.
· FFA will receive a funding allocation annually equivalent to 10% of the value of transfers of Australian domestic players internationally.
· FFA will retain a 20%, non-diluting and non-voting, ‘carry’ equity share in the League which will ensure that it remains the largest single shareholder in the Leagues.