Murray coalescence with the financial, political, media sectors


“Crash and burn”.  That was the outcome I expected to await Murray International Holding’s (MIH) debt-fuelled expansion in the early part of the last decade.  This wasn’t entrepreneurship. Borrowing money to invest in a market which was on a long-term growth spurt, without consideration that your asset values could fall, was corporate vandalism.  It was a safe enough bet as long as the commercial property market continued its incessant upwards trend, but the bubble had to burst eventually.

There were other voices out there saying the same thing.  In the pre-blog era I remember printed copies of the Dogs Bollox passed around like the potentially-subversive underground insights they were.  It was financial madness, writ large, all you needed to do was step back a little to see what was happening.

Celtic Quick News started because the underlying story of the biggest issue in Scottish football – the ability of the two largest clubs to pay their bills – was not being told.  Without Murray’s debt splurge, this blog would never have happened.

I gave running commentaries of what to expect of Rangers and MIH accounts when they were released in 2005, the evidence will be there, I told you.  I didn’t expect a convenient, and remarkable, property revaluation.  It was smoke and mirrors, though Murray inspired such confidence, even among Celtic fans, I remember “Why can’t we just revalue Celtic Park and borrow more?”

Millions were taken in executive pay and bonuses each year, despite borrowings galloping away, while the Bank of Scotland continued to open the vault.  MIH wasn’t the only bad bet Bank of Scotland made, but it was the worst.

Rangers were the ultimate vanity project.  Tens of thousands of people literally fawned before Murray, he wallowed in decades of deference, controlling oceans of the media. The best parts of history are never written, and what happened at Rangers, and with the Bank of Scotland is no different. While Murray is alive you’re only going to read the parts of this story with documented evidence.

The illegal EBT scandal was typical of how the business operated. Through this, and the also-illegal Discounted Options Scheme, Murray drove a horse and cart through the SFA rulebook. Lord Nimmo Smith found as much. In Craig Whyte, Rangers appointed a person who was not fit and proper to run a football club.  Whyte was sine died from the game and Rangers were disciplined, but it was Murray who sold the business to Whyte, despite his personal history. For all the rule breaking, and subsequent havoc he inflicted on his club, Murray has not been brought to account by the SFA, his allies still hold the balance of power, but not for ever.

The knighthood for services to Scottish business will sound hollow to those who invested in MIH pensions, and who were recently told their funds are in trouble.  Yesterday’s news that Murray is putting a squad of his businesses into liquidation, or from BBC’s Douglas Fraser that Murray’s family are buying “fire-sale assets” from MIH, which, he explains, “received what’s called “an unsolicited approach from the Murray family”, tells you what you need to know about the man.

If only there was the political will to ask for an inquiry into hundreds of millions of pounds of public money lost to the exchequer, as publicly-owned Lloyds, now owners of the Bank of Scotland, slowly come to terms with how deep the Charlotte Square money pit is.  Murray’s acolytes, those who partied hard with him during the good times, remain scattered through Scotland, from Holyrood, to Hampden.  It will take years before they slowly lose grip on their own fiefdoms.

Strip him of his title, discipline him for the rule-breaking in Scottish football, and have an inquiry into how his coalescence with the financial, political and media sectors rendered him immune from responsibility.

More later on Gary Mackay-Steven.

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  1. Naillo..,


    And like we are desperate for wingers, it’s no even papering over the cracks, it like ripping a hole on another part of the wall to distract from all the other holes, I’m beginning to think we have been deliberately run into the ground

  2. Och that’s the nearest ever, if only I hadn’t been doing my French to English translation.



    Ayrshire is Green and White

  3. 16 roads - Celtic über alles... on

    Glen Campbell is one of the greatest musicians in history, but he never wrote his own songs so he didn’t. Neither did Elvis for that matter.



    It’s no big deal anyway.



    TET – Delighted to hear that your ghirl is on the mend.



    Richie – Good luck and best wishes mo chara.



    BT – Speedy recovery for you as well chief.



    Aff oot for a wee dander in the snow.








    The Messi rumours are nonsense.



    Charlie Mulgrew to Camp Nou with Messi plus £5m for us???



    Would have to be at least £10m plus Lionel

  5. 16 roads - Celtic über alles... on

    Too busy typing there or would have been a racing certainly to win that podium there.



    Ah well, such is life.



    Good shot prestonpans bhoys.




  6. prestonpans bhoys on



    10:01 on 14 January, 2015


    “Och that’s the nearest ever”



    You were just beaten by a better Ayrshireman :0)

  7. Paul 67



    See if ye stopped yer obsession with Rangers


    ye would have known that, Celtic are after Gary McKay Stevens :)



    Hail Hail Oh Great One



    Off oot.

  8. Paul – you are correct – how can his family take over “distressed” companies and dump their liabilities?


    Will be interesting to hear if any politician has anything to say about Scottish tax payers pensions being ripped off.

  9. prestonpans bhoys



    10:05 on 14 January, 2015





    10:01 on 14 January, 2015


    “Och that’s the nearest ever”



    You were just beaten by a better Ayrshireman :0




    Is no loss what a friend gets, rather you than white van driver man…!



    Ayrshire is Green and White

  10. Zbyszek ( previous thread )



    Orlando Sa .



    Yes ——- Palermo have been heavily linked with him . Common speculation is this summer after Palermo have sold the wonderful Dybala ( 40 million euros – Real Madrid / Barca / PSG / Bayern Munich / Arsenal / Chelsea / Man Utd / Man City . ) Dybala is a fabulous player .

  11. Great article Paul.



    I smelled a rat when Rangers were £80 Million in debt so he decided to sell shares to the fans.


    The ‘Loyal’ bought one million out of the fifty odd million on offer, it probably cost more to run the process than he took in.


    That £50 million was then sucked into (an already struggling) group of Murray companies.



    For me, that was the first big fat domino to topple.



    What is needed is a public inquiry into the BOS, Masterton, Murray, SFA cartell. In the end it was public money that was lost, lessons should be learned and people made to account for their actions.

  12. Paul 67,






    ………………………………..Tap coarnir, pick it oooot!




  13. …all the “at arms length”…… *cough*……………………………. “dealings”


    need looking at.




  14. A very good piece on Murray, Paul.


    Not a word about any of it on either the BBC or STV news last night which sums up the defference still shown to him from the Scottish establishment.


    In fact I’m surprised there haven’t been more gushing pieces on his financial astuteness at being able to hoover up the ”good” assets for a song!


    A modern day Robert Maxwell is all he is, a thieving scumbag.




  15. Well done, Paul. Excellent article. While the HBOS bears the principal responsibility for Murray adventures, the SMSM have been supportive and, even today, sycophantic. Headline in today’s Herald: Sir David applies to wind up MIH. Beyond belief!

  16. Any coincidence he breaks cover just when Fat Jum does?







    *sees and smells rats*

  17. @KALAccountants @mikefstv @Barcabhoy1 @pnot888 @Berttrain @Heavidor leniency shown by Lloyds to SDM a massive scandal. Intending to expose

  18. GlassTwoThirdsFull on

    Belter, Paul. Don’t think you missed anyone there, other than the acolytes at the BBC!


    I remember well those articles you wrote in the early days of CQN. Just a pity we didn’t get the justice we deserved from Nimmo.

  19. My Hibs correspondent has said that the stadium is in lock down. Could be a major announcement at Easter Road today for anyone interested.


    Could be a takeover. Interesting times in Scottish football.




  20. HMRC tax evasion



    HBOS taken over by order of Brown and Darling



    Knighted by the Queen



    Will the MP’s at Westminster be raising PAUL67 excellent piece in question time ?

  21. ScotPatsFan



    ‘A modern day Robert Maxwell’.



    So good I used it on twitter. Hope you don’t mind. I also hope Maxwell’s family don’t charge me with libel, since they would not appreciate the connection:-)



    Árd Macha

  22. South of Tunis



    I always enjoy your tales of Italy the class


    culuture corruption ect ect ect.






    One of my bhoys got a grant from DHSS


    between school and UNI to go on a course as


    a bar tender. He went to Tennents not far from


    Celtic Park. Amongst hundreds of useless info


    he likes to regurgitate regularly was that the No1


    market for TENNETS SUPER LAGER was ITALY.



    Apparently they import hundreds of the stuff.


    I was sceptical but on a cruise last summer


    which included Napoli Livorno Citavechhi ??


    even Pompei. I was able to buy the devils brew.



    I declined offer though my bhoy made me buy him


    one in Livorno(maybe it was there since hvns last


    played there certainly tasted like that)



    Any explanation for this ?



    ps UNI son didnt use course other than boring us


    rather he took up Refeering to subsidise his studies



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