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By ESPN Staff

Darlington must raise £750k

Darlington's administrator Harvey Madden has told the Conference club it has until April 30 to raise £750,000 in order to exit administration.

The Quakers, who entered administration for the third time in nine years in January, intend to raise the majority of funds by a share issue after fans formed the company Darlington FC 1883 Ltd.

They will sell the shares for £100 each, released in three blocks of 2500, with the first block protected so that buyers would be reimbursed if an initial £250,000 is not raised.

If the funds are raised by the deadline, the club's creditors would then vote on a Company Voluntary Agreement (CVA) before administration could be formally exited, with Madden revealing that £600,000 would be enough to make the club viable.

"We have been here (in administration) three times before - I am the third guy sat here and I hope I am the last," he told a press conference. "A Financial Services Authority registered company called Crowdcube, which is in the business of financing crowd-funding platform to raise equity, will be involved in this.

"It will basically be a small investment times a lot of members equals the funds needed to go forward for the football club. We've got [former chairman and creditor] Raj Singh's support, who apart from being a creditor is willing to support this through.

"So one assumes therefore he will vote in favour of the CVA and one is mindful he will allow us to continue."

On January 18, Madden told players Darlington no longer existed but they were dramatically saved by a late intervention from fans.

They stumped up enough cash to keep the Quakers alive for the next three games and he has confirmed funding is in place to carry on paying the players.

"I've been paying players on an agreed sum per game, they will continue to do that," Madden added. "If there are sufficient funds through the door, and you will always appreciate an administrator has to be careful in how they are spending the money, I will continue to make sure the players get an appearance money, and if I can do I will enhance that."

Darlington MP Jenny Chapman added: "What we now need to see are sustained good attendances at matches and a really strong showing of support through the purchase of shares.

"The administrator has asked the question 'does Darlington want a football club?', and the answer has to be yes."

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