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Legal insights & industry updates

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Harper Macleod advises on fan ownership transactions for St Mirren and Greenock Morton

Harper Macleod are delighted to have acted for The St Mirren Independent Supporters Association and Golden Casket respectively on the recent transfers of St Mirren and Greenock Morton into fan ownership.

St Mirren

We advised official supporter’s trust The 1877 Society Limited (more commonly known by its football trust name of St Mirren Independent Supporters Association (SMiSA)) on the acquisition of shares in St Mirren Football Club from Gordon Scott. The deal was made alongside Kibble, a Paisley-based charity and social enterprise, who became part-owners of the club in 2020 and saw SMiSA become majority shareholders of St Mirren. Originally it was hoped that the transition to fan ownership would be completed in 10 years however this recent acquisition has allowed the transition to be made in 5 years. Going forward following the completion of this deal the contributions of the members of SMiSA will be directed towards supporting different areas of St Mirren including the youth academy and the charitable foundation. 

Greenock Morton

The long-standing relationship between Golden Casket (the Rae family’s firm and the club’s previous owners) and the club has been brought to a close now that the takeover has been concluded, with outgoing chairman Crawford Rae – son of former chair Douglas – expressing his belief that the move to fan ownership is a momentous day for the team. 

“There is no better legacy for the Rae family than to afford the fans the opportunity of community ownership which is why we decided to gift MCT our majority shareholding as opposed to selling to a third party. The vision that MCT displayed to our family convinced us that community ownership was the best option for the future success of Greenock Morton Football Club and the right time for us to step aside."

These transfers reflect the growth of fan ownership within the Scottish game and we have no doubt many more clubs will follow.

“We are extremely grateful for the advice and assistance provided by Craig Ramsay and his team at Harper Macleod, which enabled us to complete the purchase of the second batch of Gordon Scott's shares and become the largest shareholder in St Mirren football club, thereby bringing it into fan ownership." Alan Quinn, secretary of SMiSA


fan ownership, sports law