News: Voters Rescue Hansa Rostock

It is too late to save FC Hansa Rostock from relegation to the 3rd Liga despite the club’s gutty comeback effort in their season finale against Union Berlin, which Hansa lost 5-4.  But the citizenry of the Hanseatic City have voted to bail out their home club to insure its continuation despite being in debt levels that threatened insolvency for the club.

Last week the Bundesliga Fanatic chronicled the financial troubles plaguing Hansa Rostock, but a vote taken by citizens Tuesday of the Mecklenburg-Vorpommern city approved a bailout plan for the ailing club.  According to site n-tv, “the aid package provides for a partial waiver of the tax debt in the amount of 680,000 €, the purchase of a property located in Hansa-sports complex with a value of 530,000 € and a grant to the Association in the amount of 750,000 €. ”  The bailout totals almost 2 million € in relief to the club that has accumulated over 8.5 million € of debt.

Hansa Chairman Bernd Hoffmann stated after the voter’s consent that “”I am delighted with the positive outcome of this vote, and we say thank you on behalf of the entire club to the Rostock citizenship.  We will do our utmost to justify the confidence of the citizenry that the right decision has been made today.”

The club still has hurdles to clear before all is safe, including meeting requirements from two banks and the state, along with the gaining the approval of the DFL in lifting their conditional license status by May 24.  The club will also be helped by FC Bayern München, who have agreed to play a friendly next season with the Kogge to provide additional revenue for the beleaguered side.

Over 6,000 Hansa Rostock fans met over the weekend to encourage their fellow citizens support of the bailout plan during Tuesday’s voting.  Opponents of the bailout cited the city’s own level of debt and the substandard condition of equipment at local schools and daycare centers, but in the end support for the club ruled.

Hansa Rostock finished last in the 2011/2012 2. Bundesliga table with a 5-12-17 after gaining promotion in the preceding campaign.  A study done in 2007 indicated that the club has a strong fan base that ranks seventh among all German clubs despite the fact that the team has spent the last decade bouncing up and down between brief appearances in the top-tier, 2. Bundesliga competition and 3. Liga play.

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Gerry Wittmann

Gerry is the founder of the Bundesliga Fanatic. Besides loving German football, he also enjoys the NBA, collecting jerseys and LPs, his pets and wishes he had more time for fishing, bicycling and learning the bass guitar.

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