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Hearts staff set to be made redundant

Updated: Thursday, 20 Jun 2013 14:03 | Comments

Hearts were docked 15 points yesterday
Hearts were docked 15 points yesterday

Staff at Hearts will be made redundant today as the process of seeing the club through a cashflow crisis begins, joint-administrator Bryan Jackson has said.

Jackson, whose accountancy firm BDO yesterday took control of the Edinburgh club's financial affairs, was meeting employees at Tynecastle at lunchtime.

Hearts are £25million in debt, the vast majority of which is owed to similarly insolvent Lithuanian firms Ukio Bankas and UBIG, who together own most of the club.

Their short-term problems include unpaid wages to players, which were due last Friday, and tax debts.

Jackson, also the administrator for Dunfermline and who has performed similar roles at Clydebank, Motherwell Clyde, Dundee and Portsmouth, said the situation at Tynecastle was "as bad as any that I've come across".

He told BBC Radio Scotland's Good Morning Scotland programme: "It is obviously a crucial period and there is no easy answer. Job losses unfortunately will be inevitable, we do need to cut the costs as quickly as we can.

"We're desperately looking at ways of bringing in some income. Unfortunately the most obvious and probably the only real way of doing it is to make the usual plea to supporters, who we appreciate have already given and given.

"But there is nowhere else really to go apart from that source, and obviously trying to sell players, which we don't want to do but we're really forced to do, trying to sell a few players as quickly as we can.

"Unfortunately there will be redundancies."

He conceded that liquidation was "always a possibility" adding: "The biggest problem is the present cashflow, keeping the doors open. Obviously there will be redundancies and that's a nightmare situation for those people.

"But even for the people being kept on there's real concern and they will be worried, and at the moment we can't give any promise as to how we're going to fund the ongoing wages."

More than 5,000 Hearts fans have pledged money to a takeover vehicle, the Foundation of Hearts, while a number of other groups have expressed interest in a buyout.

Jackson added: "There's obviously some buyers out there, whether any of them come good is not in our control. "But we'll be meeting interested parties as quickly as we can and hope we can progress that really quickly."

BDO is holding a media conference at 5pm today where it will provide an update on the situation.

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