Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Eight out of ten elite league clubs under an action plan – one thing worries the ice hockey association


Vålerenga reached the final in the NM play-offs, but is one of many elite series clubs under an action plan from the Norwegian Ice Hockey Association. Photo: Lise Åserud / NTB

Of NTB | 14.05.2024 07:10:35

Economy and business: This is confirmed by Lise Kvil Torgersen, vice-president of the NIHF and head of the club license committee, to NTB. She says that the only elite series clubs for men that are not under an action plan are Stavanger Oilers and Storhamar.

Torgersen states that the association has adopted new rules on a higher share of equity, and that it was therefore expected that more clubs would be subject to the three-year action plan.

– One thing is that there are financially tough times for everyone, with increased travel costs and such. In addition, we now set much stricter requirements for the clubs in the club license regulations. That is why we have expected most clubs to come up with an action plan in the coming years, she says.

Torgersen elaborates:

– We have looked at several measures to improve the financial conditions in the top two divisions, and this is the first step. Increased equity will give the clubs better days and greater predictability when it comes to completing a season.

* Comet Halden

* Fresh Asker

* Lillehammer

* Lørenskog

* Narvik

* Sparta Sarpsborg

* The star

* Vålerenga

In the 1st division, only Gjøvik is subject to an action plan at the present time.

No club has breached the action plan in a way that risks points being deducted or other sporting sanctions. Last season, Sparta Sarpsborg started with three minus points because they had breached the interim goals in the plan.

– Many have probably perceived it as a slightly negatively charged word in the past. We must see the action plan as a tool in the process we are in now, to achieve better finances in the clubs. It is therefore wrong to regard the action plan as something negative. It could well have been called something else.

The hockey association promises a good follow-up of the clubs that are subject to the new action plan.

– We believe it is important to have a good dialogue with the clubs in this process, which will last a few years, says Torgersen.

She adds that, as of now, it is not completely clear which clubs have secured a license ahead of next season. The aim is to get this in place within a short time.

– There has been a large increase in this with responsible loans, and that is worrying, says Torgersen and elaborates:

– Slightly simplified, you can say that a responsible loan is a form of conditional sponsorship grant. We are still concerned about the increase in subordinated loans. At the same time, we believe that part of the reason has been large cost increases, especially travel costs. And for most people it has come on a little too quickly, you see that in the business world as well.

In the Eliteserien (next season’s team), the following eight clubs are subject to an action plan:

The head of the club license committee clarifies that the action plan is a tool to help the clubs and says that it could well be given a new name.

Although most of the clubs now seem to have good control over their finances, there is one thing that causes concern for the ice hockey association. This applies to an increase in the number of so-called subordinated loans. It is a type of loan that in sports is booked as equity, and where the lender has no security to get the money back.

(© NTB)


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