Arena Boss Quits Over Ricoh Sale To SISU

17 May 2012 12:25
More emerging following departure

David Allvey resigned from the board of Arena Coventry Limited which runs the Ricoh Arena in a row about dropping the rent that Coventry City pay to use the facilities and SISU wanting to buy a half share in the stadium and conference facilities.

Allvey is understood to have concerns about the future of the Sky Blues and did not want to force the Ricoh Arena which made a profit of just £470,000 at May last year and lost at least one big multi-million pound conference in Boots who are understood to have switched to Telford, in to debt.

Mr Allvey, who has directorships of a number of companies including Thomas Cook, wished everyone involved with the Ricoh well whilst Coventry City Council leader and City supporter for 57 years John Mutton, told the CT's Les Reid: : “I am aware there are one or two differences of opinion over a strategy for how to maximise use of the Ricoh Arena.

"The difference of opinion is not between the two shareholders, the council and the Higgs charity.

“The Ricoh is only achieving 50 per cent of its potential. Profits again this year are going to be very small.

“ACL hasn’t been able to attract developers to build hotels nearby. That’s costing us £2million in conference facilities a year.

“The one thing potential conference investors always tell is we’ve only got 70-odd bedroom spaces and there are no hotels nearby.

“If there is an attempt to lower rent for the football club, it could mean putting ACL into a non-profit making position.

“Someone has got to take ACL forward. It can’t stay static. It’s not a criticism of anyone, or any of the staff. It’s the reality of life.

“I know they are working hard to attract other events to the Ricoh. They keep putting bids in, but things are being turned down, although not everything by any means.’’

More on this