Cologne –

1. FC Köln looking for urgently needed equity. In order to fill the gaps in the balance sheet, the club relies on so-called mezzanine, i.e. profit participation capital that only needs to be serviced as a subordinate. The aim is to avoid having to sell shares in the association in a relatively weak economic starting position and only to compensate for financial gaps.

  • 1. FC Köln: club management looking for investors
  • Participation certificates should allow financial leeway
  • Open fan debate about how to handle investor money is planned

The background: Werner Wolf (67), Carsten Wettich (41), Eckhard Sauren (49) but also managing director Alexander Wehrle (46) try with great personal commitment to find investors for the profit participation certificates among friends and sponsors.

They have an interest rate of less than six percent. “A financial advisor would probably advise against the opportunity-benefit ratio,” smiles fund manager Sauren. “Anyone who is involved here is at the FC’s side in a difficult situation.”

1. FC Köln’s board of directors has clear conditions for investor money

Precondition for a commitment: The renouncement of influencing the use of the funds. “That’s exactly what we don’t want,” says FC Vice Wettich. “That is why we have also chosen this method of financing: We are looking for a solution that is economically sensible and at the same time ensures that 1. FC Köln remains free in its decisions.”

There also seem to be enough donors. “We have found various donors from Cologne who provide us with equity capital on the balance sheet without participating in the FC,” says President Werner Wolf.

1. FC Köln plans to sell shares only for a bigger goal

This is not a final rejection of investors. A sale of shares is still an option at 1. FC Köln, but it could be considered for a bigger purpose: It could finance the purchase of the stadium, a step that would finally bring “stones” to FC’s balance sheet and thus the Gordian knot in the further development of the club could be broken. The members should decide on this. Therefore, an open exchange of views is to be started in the coming months.

Should the expansion of the FC training area at Geißbockheim finally become possible, there is already a plan at FC: A second fan bond could provide the necessary start-up financing.

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