Intercity, the 'startup' team that challenges Bar?a, is listed on the stock market and pays bonuses in shares.
The Alicante club has achieved four promotions in five years and is in the sporting hands of former Atl?tico captain Juanfran Torres and former Valencian player Jorge L?pez
Can a football club emerge that, like startups, grows quickly and carves its place among the classics? Despite the particularities of the sport, it can. The example is CF Intercity from Alicante, the team that will challenge FC Barcelona in the Copa del Rey with the Rico P?rez stadium to bursting. Five years ago it didn't even exist and, after four promotions in a row and the feat of being the first Spanish club to be listed on the stock market, a rival arrives that places it in an unbeatable showcase. Only the pairing made its price rise on the parquet.
The businessmen Salvador Mart? and Javier Mira bought a team in the First Regional, willing to repeat the success achieved by their facial recognition company, Facephi . They renamed it and began to revolutionize the management in the offices, especially in the financing channels, because on the pitch they sought the advice of who is now their sports vice president, the former Atl?tico captain Juanfran Torres . With promotion to the First RFEF in their pocket and one step away from the goal of reaching professional football, the sports management was reinforced with the former Valencia player Jorge L?pez .
"It is a club that has grown very quickly in terms of sports, so much so that it has been impossible to match it with having its own field, a sports city and infrastructures in the best conditions," L?pez told this newspaper. The investment, with a budget of four million, one of the highest in group 2 of Primera RFEF, has allowed him to design a squad where 11 promotion players and 13 signings remain. "The idea was to fight to be on top, but it is a very difficult category and in the first lap we found ourselves in an unexpected situation," he recalls. The awakening has come a little late and, despite being in the lower-middle part of the table, "we have hope of reaching the playoffs."
The Cup is one more incentive for Gustavo Siviero 's boys , the former Mallorca defender who has been at the head of the group for three seasons, with two promotions behind him that keep him credit. In the last one, with the club already listed on the stock market, the squad received its bonus in shares, which today trade at 0.42 euros. They are far from the 1.2 euros with which they went on the stock market and the 2.2 that they reached, but well above the minimum of 0.09 that they had in November at the worst sports moment. In fact, the pairing with Bar?a helped to improve its stock market value, a revaluation that reached 46%. Intercity lives with the volatility of football and the markets.
Of the three shareholders who bought the club, they have gone to almost 3,000 who, for the moment, have not earned any money. In its growth it has the support of ABO , a Dubai fund that helps to attract investors interested in buying shares and providing capital with which the losses are financed. At Intercity there is no classic patron to support it, but rather its budget comes from capital increases.
Because there are no levers either. In a province riddled with rivals in the First RFEF, with the competition from Elche and even the pull of Hercules , the growth of the social mass and commercial income is not easy. In addition, it measures its budget with historical giants such as Castell?n or Real Murcia . That is why they know that sustainability will only come when they reach professional football with television rights.
At the moment, Bar?a will leave a good pinch at the box office, but not Gustavo Siviero warns: ?We do not want to be sparring for anyone. We know that one of the best teams is coming, but also that this is football and we are going to try to take advantage of it." This time the gratification will not be in actions.