Westminster Media Forum

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Next steps for football governance and implementation of the independent regulator in England

Morning, Monday, 22nd July 2024

Online


This conference will focus on next steps for football regulation and governance in England.


It is bringing together stakeholders and policymakers to discuss priorities and key considerations for the implementation of the Independent Football Regulator in England, as the Football Governance Bill continues to progress through Parliament.


Delegates will examine proposed powers granted to the IFR, including its oversight of financial sustainability and provisions for increased fan engagement in decision-making processes, as well as the future for parachute payments, looking at the backstop powers granted for the regulator to intervene in the distribution of finances throughout the football pyramid.


Those attending will assess the scope and expected functionality of the strengthened Owners’ and Directors’ Tests, and implications for future investment and football club ownership in England.


The agenda also looks at next steps for clubs, their boards and senior leaders in light of proposed new corporate governance regulations, including the design, uptake and compliance with a Football Club Corporate Governance Code, as well as options for supporting smaller clubs.


The conference will also be an opportunity to examine the operation and responsibilities of the Shadow Regulator, including priorities for league, club and investor engagement with preparatory work. Sessions will examine interoperability with existing regulatory frameworks and governing bodies, and the scope of the State of the Game report designed to provide the evidence base for the IFR.


We are pleased to be able to include keynote sessions with: Martyn Henderson, Interim Chief Operating Officer, Shadow Regulator, Department for Culture, Media and Sport; Clare Sumner CBE, Chief Policy and Corporate Affairs Officer, Premier League; and a further senior speaker from the DCMS.


Overall, areas for discussion include:

  • regulatory powers of the IFR:
    • provisions for financial and non-financial penalties - Profit and Sustainability Rules and a proposed spending cap - implementation of a licensing system and annual levy
    • options for future amendments to regulatory powers - key considerations for proportionality
  • financial distribution: assessing backstop powers to intervene in revenue distribution - future approaches to parachute payments - effectiveness of financial oversight measures outlined in the Bill
  • fan engagement: strategies for including fan representatives in decision-making processes
  • Owners’ and Directors’ Tests: implications for future investment into English football - assessing how the tests will work in practice - requirements for the production of financial plans
  • corporate governance:
    • design, uptake and compliance with a Football Club Corporate Governance Code - support for compliance needed for smaller clubs
    • options for inclusion of welfare standards - demonstrating requisite competence for officers of clubs
  • shadow regulator: scope and operation - next steps for the State of the Game report - priorities for preparation - interoperability with existing governing bodies and regulatory frameworks

The conference will be an opportunity for stakeholders to consider the issues alongside key policy officials who are due to attend from DCMS; DSIT; and NAO - as well as parliamentary pass-holders from the House of Commons.



Keynote Speakers

Martyn Henderson

Interim Chief Operating Officer, Shadow Regulator, Department for Culture, Media and Sport

Clare Sumner CBE

Chief Policy and Corporate Affairs Officer, Premier League

Keynote Speakers

Martyn Henderson

Interim Chief Operating Officer, Shadow Regulator, Department for Culture, Media and Sport

Clare Sumner CBE

Chief Policy and Corporate Affairs Officer, Premier League

Senior speaker confirmed from the Department for Culture, Media and Sport

Speakers

Heather Alderson

Vice Chair, Charlton Athletic Supporters Trust

Mike Baker

Director of Advocacy, Fair Game

Mark Palios

Chairman, Tranmere Rovers FC

Harriet Leach

Legal Director, Onside Law