The joint administrators of Bradford Bulls have confirmed that they are paying staff wages in full, and seem to be making steady progress regarding the sale of the club.
All 65 of the playing and coaching staff at the club will receive full salaries today (Thursday), and there continues to be ongoing and extensive dialogue about the process with the RFL.
The 68 members of the non-playing staff will receive their full salaries on Friday.
There is also ongoing dialogue between the adminstrators, the RFL and the parties interested in buying the club.
Judith Cummins MP outlined the difficult nature of the process for all invvolved.
“This is clearly a very complicated situation and a difficult process,” she said.
“I met with administrators this week to raise concerns I had and they outlined the progress they were hoping to make.
“Today’s news is very welcome, particularly in relation to player and staff wages, which was one of the most pressing concerns I raised with them and with the Rugby Football League when I spoke to their chief executive this week.
“I will continue to speak with all those parties involved and support them in making sure that everything that can be done to save the Bulls is being done.
“Today’s announcement sounds like a positive step forward in doing just that.”
Mr Gary Pettit of PBC Business Recovery, Northampton, who was appointed one of the joint administrators,has been impressed with the way the club’s employees have coped with the situation.
“I am humbled by the way in which the players and staff at the club have dealt with the administration.
“It has been a genuine pleasure to see the dedication, professionalism and sheer graft exhibited by the players and staff.
“We have announced a sale of stock in the club shop at bargain prices, which has led to considerable extra work for the staff at very short notice.
“The staff have rolled up their sleeves and done that work quickly; this has helped inject valuable cash into the business.
“I would like to thank all those supporters who have come forward to support the Bradford Bulls in their hour of need.
“Despite the administration, the fans’ faith is illustrated by the continued purchase of season tickets in the last week.
“I would also like to thank all of the players, fans and staff for their patience and understanding.
“They realise that – given the calibre and number of parties, who are undertaking due diligence – there remains some incredibly exciting opportunities ahead. I remain very impressed by the innovative strategies proposed.
“We continue to work from dawn until dusk (and beyond) to secure a sale of the club to the right bidder.”
Mr Howard Roberts, Solicitor to the joint administrators, added: “Clearly, the payment in full of the wages is a legitimate victory off the field for the Bradford Bulls.
“I wholeheartedly endorse Gary Pettit’s gratitude expressed to the players, staff and fans. The professionalism of the players and the staff has been exemplary and they are a joy to be around.
“Gary and I would like to pay tribute to the operations director of the Rugby Football League – Karen Moorhouse – whose energy, insight and expertise have been invaluable. The ongoing advice and support, from the RFL has been critical.
“We are also very grateful to Chris Wood and Alannah Rhodes from BHP Clough & Co. whose swift professionalism implemented an early solution to the practical payroll problems.
“I am in the process of drafting a sale agreement, which is likely to be issued over the weekend. Whilst public comment is restricted by non-disclosure agreements, we continue to make solid progress with the interested parties regarding the sale process. Equally, this is not an overnight procedure and nothing can be guaranteed in terms of time-scale.
“We would emphasise again that the cultural capital of the Club is vital. We also re-emphasise that it remains a priority to safeguard the Bulls’ heritage and legacy.
“We agree whole-heartedly with the comment by one of the potential buyers, who suggested that the successful bidder will be a mere custodian of a great club for the city of Bradford.
“We will provide a further update next week.”