Graham Rae’s departure as Caley Thistle chairman comes just over a week before Inverness hold an extraordinary general meeting – but what does this mean for the future of the club?
Rae has resigned from his position after just over two years at the helm, with director Alan McPhee also stepping down.
Vice-chairman Ross Morrison has stepped up to assume Rae’s role, leaving Gordon Fyfe and Liam Dalgarno as the only remaining directors.
The changes have clearly left a gaping void in the Inverness boardroom, however the club are hopeful they can attract fresh investment when they address shareholders in their EGM, which will be held at Caledonian Stadium at 7.30pm next Thursday.
Rae’s tenure has been something of a thankless task, given it has coincided with a period of scaling down since the club suffered relegation from the Premiership in 2017.
At the same time, Rae has also been tasked with producing a budget which gives manager John Robertson the best possible chance of challenging for promotion.
Restoring the club’s place in the top flight remains Caley Jags’ goal – and that has not changed. The challenges Inverness face in order to meet it cannot be ignored however, and they are only getting more difficult the longer they remain in the second-tier.
Caley Thistle posted a loss of £810,000 for the period covering their first season in the Championship, and are expected to announce another loss for the following 12 months at their next annual general meeting.
Inverness’ statement which confirmed the EGM last week confirmed talks with individuals and businesses have been held in recent months, which suggests the Highlanders have been proactive in exploring new ways to raise revenues.
Rae’s departure as chairman could be viewed as a potential opportunity for somebody to impose their vision for Caley Jags, and chief executive Scot Gardiner and his colleagues will be looking to present the club as an attractive proposition for new investors at the EGM.
Among the factors he is likely to draw upon is the fact that Rae has left a club which now has ownership of its stadium, following the completion of a deal to transfer the lease from Tulloch Homes. The club will also draw upon the fact they have no bank debt and no soft loans.
There clearly appears to be a fairly pressing need for investment though. All should become clearer come Thursday evening.