Kasparov vs Ilyumzhinov: the FIDE Presidency battle begins

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Angus French
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Re: Kasparov vs Ilyumzhinov: the FIDE Presidency battle begi

Postby Angus French » Tue Jan 28, 2014 3:37 pm

Jonathan Bryant wrote:Streatham Common can think what it likes. Streatham Hill remains firmly in the 'unwise to put too much trust in Mr P' camp until there's a clear reason to believe otherwise.
If I'm Streatham Common then I think I agree with what Streatham Hill says above.

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Re: Kasparov vs Ilyumzhinov: the FIDE Presidency battle begi

Postby NickFaulks » Tue Jan 28, 2014 9:26 pm

Andrew Paulson has sent the following email to a number of key figures in ECF politics. As the final paragraph makes clear ( I'm not sure it does, but this was evidently the intention ) he is hoping that it will be made public to a wide audience ahead a possible legal mess. He has asked me, as a neutral observer*, to put it here, in case nobody else does. That seems like a good idea, and I do so without comment.

Board Colleagues,

I have tried to be informative, constructive and civil engaging on this issue with the Board. Nigel's behaviour makes this no longer possible and I will no longer be discussing it in any forum or with any of you, pending court action. I hope that this will allow us to get on with our important work, unfettered.

The disclosure of (stolen) confidential documents to the press by an ECF official, along with being against the law, constitutes an ethical violation under item 2.2.10 of the FIDE Code of Ethics as it may cause the English Chess Federation to appear in an unjustifiable and unfavorable light and in this way damage its reputation. This will be referred to the FIDE Ethics Commission for disciplinary action in the coming days.

The recent situation concerning the disclosure of confidential documents to The Sunday Times and a Canadian website by ECF’s FIDE Delegate Nigel Short must be considered inconsistent with his high position in the ECF. Thus, the question of Nigel Short’s removal will be raised before ECF Council in accordance with item A17(2) of the ECF Articles of Association.

Nigel Short has today circulated to the press a draft Memorandum (a document stolen from my computer, received by Short from Garry Kasparov) and he has provided us with a rough translation from the Russian. He claims that this document proves that Kirsan Ilyumzhinov is a shareholder in AGON. I have repeatedly stated that this is false. The last sentence of the stolen document demonstrates that the document does not prove anything of the kind: “We are willing to discuss other possible variants, including an initial [or including the original] model, in which all financial risk would lie on our side.”

There were several models that we explored over many iterations while establishing the shareholder structure of AGON after the FIDE/AGON contract had been negotiated. These included my financing the project alone ('the original model'), having Kirsan support it as he had many earlier similar chess projects (FIDE Commerce, Global Chess, CNC), giving FIDE dividends from a shareholding in place of a revenue share, financing through pre-sold sponsorship, bringing in outside investors, or some combination thereof. In the end, I alone am the Founder of and own 100% of the ordinary voting shares in AGON Ltd. (AGON) both legally and beneficially. There are no other shareholders in AGON and no other classes of shares, nor have there ever been. AGON is Jersey Limited Company Registered Number: 109840. There are two shares and share capital of £2. There are no directors.

To the extent that the Memorandum was a draft, some of the terms were indeed carried forward in some form and some were abandoned. For example, in the end, AGON did engage Global Chess as a general contractor for event management, but for $7,500/month instead of $15,000/event. This restructuring was deemed logical, as there were 6 events in the 2013 schedule. Mr. Makropoulos, on the other hand, rejected out of hand the idea of consultants related in any way to FIDE receiving retainers. And, indeed, under a separate agreement my salary from AGON was agreed to be EUR240k/year, but I never took it.

AGON is a private company and thus its accounts are private. Jersey was selected as a highly-regulated but tax-effective location. AGON’s income was international and such a jurisdiction is appropriate to avoid incurring unnecessary national taxes imposed by jurisdictions other than at income source. The fact that the audits of AGON are shown to Makropoulos and Freeman at all is unusual. Companies don't usually show their accounts to anyone other than shareholders and the taxman. However, in this case, under the Agreement, FIDE needs to be able to verify the revenue (because payments to FIDE are based on it) while AGON needs to maintain a reasonable level of confidentiality vis-a-vis its other counter-parties; we solved this issue by allowing two representatives of FIDE, bound by confidentiality, to audit the accounts. The contract is publicly available, was approved by the Presidential Board and ratified by the General Assembly of FIDE.


As far as I am concerned this note is not governed by Board confidentiality, for obvious reasons. Feel free to share this with your colleagues and advisors.

Andrew Paulson



* yes, I am a neutral observer. My interests are narrow, and I would support any candidate who seemed likely to allow the QC to do its job running titles and ratings in a sensible and impartial manner, in accordance with the Statutes. On recent evidence, neither of those presently in the race qualifies, but we'll see. In any case, I don't have the impression that anyone on this forum cares much about that.
Last edited by Carl Hibbard on Tue Jan 28, 2014 9:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Kasparov vs Ilyumzhinov: the FIDE Presidency battle begi

Postby Carl Hibbard » Tue Jan 28, 2014 9:48 pm

So how have you seen this then Nick?
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Re: Kasparov vs Ilyumzhinov: the FIDE Presidency battle begi

Postby Jonathan Bryant » Tue Jan 28, 2014 9:53 pm

Carl Hibbard wrote:So how have you seen this then Nick?



Nick Faulks: "He has asked me, as a neutral observer*, to put it here,"

He being AP.


This is not all going swimmingly is it?


PS: I'd suggest that removing the AP email address (and all the others for that matter) from the message would be a prudent step, however.

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Re: Kasparov vs Ilyumzhinov: the FIDE Presidency battle begi

Postby Carl Hibbard » Tue Jan 28, 2014 9:56 pm

Jonathan Bryant wrote:PS: I'd suggest that removing the AP email address (and all the others for that matter) from the message would be a prudent step, however.

Thanks done, I already had a lot of background information from both sides anyway.
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Re: Kasparov vs Ilyumzhinov: the FIDE Presidency battle begi

Postby Carl Hibbard » Tue Jan 28, 2014 10:03 pm

Jonathan Bryant wrote:This is not all going swimmingly is it?

No.

Let me be clear this forum exists to provoke discussion nothing more, it is as always hard work :shock:
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Re: Kasparov vs Ilyumzhinov: the FIDE Presidency battle begi

Postby Jonathan Bryant » Tue Jan 28, 2014 10:04 pm

Carl Hibbard wrote:
Jonathan Bryant wrote:This is not all going swimmingly is it?

No.

Let me be clear this forum exists to provoke discussion nothing more, it is as always hard work :shock:



But it is very much appreciated and your efforts in particular, Carl, are very valuable. Especially at times like this.

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Re: Kasparov vs Ilyumzhinov: the FIDE Presidency battle begi

Postby Roger de Coverly » Tue Jan 28, 2014 10:08 pm

NickFaulks quoting Andrew Paulson wrote:AGON is a private company and thus its accounts are private. Jersey was selected as a highly-regulated but tax-effective location. AGON’s income was international and such a jurisdiction is appropriate to avoid incurring unnecessary national taxes imposed by jurisdictions other than at income source. The fact that the audits of AGON are shown to Makropoulos and Freeman at all is unusual. Companies don't usually show their accounts to anyone other than shareholders and the taxman.


I can entirely understand the reasoning behind basing Agon in an offshore location given its potential international scope. I don't think the point about company privacy is entirely valid though. As I understand it, under UK Company Law, it is required that Companies file a set of accounts with UK Authorities and that crucially, these are available for inspection by all interested parties whether shareholders or not. Whilst Jersey law doesn't require this level of disclosure, it could be possible for Agon to go beyond the letter of the law and make its accounts or an extract from its accounts public.

I thought the ECF Board had been very quiet in their public statements for the last three months, presumably this row has been gathering intensity. I'd suspect that if put to Council, the voting membership would be on Nigel's side. Other than by Nigel, I don't think there's doubt on the ownership of Agon, but there is a difference between answering "No" to the question of whether Kirsan has or had any influence and the new disclosures that the structure as implemented was at the end of a tortuous negotiation which could have resulted in Kirsan being a major investor.

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Re: Kasparov vs Ilyumzhinov: the FIDE Presidency battle begi

Postby NickFaulks » Tue Jan 28, 2014 10:21 pm

Have I done something wrong? I can see that I should have thought to remove the addresses, although I imagine they are not hard to find. Apologies for that. The names of recipients did seem relevant, although given that he wants everyone to read it, maybe not. The one email address I doubt that AP wanted undisclosed was his own. He insists that he wishes to hear all comments, favourable or otherwise, and on that I take him at his word.

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Re: Kasparov vs Ilyumzhinov: the FIDE Presidency battle begi

Postby Carl Hibbard » Tue Jan 28, 2014 10:24 pm

NickFaulks wrote:Have I done something wrong? I can see that I should have thought to remove the addresses, although I imagine they are not hard to find. Apologies for that. The names of recipients did seem relevant, although given that he wants everyone to read it, maybe not. The one email address I doubt that AP wanted undisclosed was his own. He insists that he wishes to hear all comments, favourable or otherwise, and on that I take him at his word.

Yes sorry Nick a momentary panic as you published email addresses, try to avoid that one please.

I would prefer everyone stand up and be counted rather than use third parties for their politics however.
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Re: Kasparov vs Ilyumzhinov: the FIDE Presidency battle begi

Postby JustinHorton » Tue Jan 28, 2014 10:38 pm

Andrew Paulson, quoted by NickFaulks, wrote:The disclosure of (stolen) confidential documents to the press by an ECF official...(a document stolen from my computer, received by Short from Garry Kasparov)


This is a remarkably strong allegation. I trust Mr Paulson has reported this to the police?
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Re: Kasparov vs Ilyumzhinov: the FIDE Presidency battle begi

Postby IM Jack Rudd » Tue Jan 28, 2014 10:43 pm

NickFaulks wrote:My interests are narrow, and I would support any candidate who seemed likely to allow the QC to do its job running titles and ratings in a sensible and impartial manner, in accordance with the Statutes.


If that's your only criterion, I'll enter the race myself. Would Bermuda like to nominate me?

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Re: Kasparov vs Ilyumzhinov: the FIDE Presidency battle begi

Postby JustinHorton » Tue Jan 28, 2014 10:55 pm

Is there some reason why Andrew Paulson is incapable of making his own postings on here?

(This is no criticism of Nick Faulks, by the way. I merely observe that Mr Paulson is in possession of a login.)
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Re: Kasparov vs Ilyumzhinov: the FIDE Presidency battle begi

Postby NickFaulks » Tue Jan 28, 2014 11:03 pm

Carl Hibbard wrote:Yes sorry Nick a momentary panic as you published email addresses, try to avoid that one please.

I would prefer everyone stand up and be counted rather than use third parties for their politics however.


I shall be more thoughtful in future. Thanks for cleaning it up.

I think AP felt that he is no longer able to post directly here, but I've probably said enough now. I don't think anyone would accuse either Paulson or Short of any reluctance to stick their neck out ( lead with their chin? ).

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Re: Kasparov vs Ilyumzhinov: the FIDE Presidency battle begi

Postby JustinHorton » Tue Jan 28, 2014 11:04 pm

NickFaulks wrote:I think AP felt that he is no longer able to post directly here


In what way?
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