Pickering SC and Ajax FC Merger: Questions and Answers

The Board and Staff of Pickering SC are very excited with this initiative. Over the past few months we have been working diligently along side Ajax FC to understand everyone’s possible opinions, questions, enthusiasm and skepticism; together we want to ensure every detail serves the best interests of our members. Below are questions received from members along with additional information supporting the merger.

Q. Why are you merging at this time?

A. Both clubs have been affected by the changing landscape of soccer in the region and across the province. There is a noticeable trend towards clubs working together as partners and affiliates, while at the same time fragmentation is making the sport more complex for our players and parents. The Boards of both the PSC and AFC have recognised and agreed that the integration of our two clubs with a united approach will best position us as a relevant and progressive Club with a more sustainable future.

Q. What are the benefits to Pickering SC by merging with Ajax FC?

A. The benefits of merging for both clubs are substantial. The main advantages to Pickering would be;

a) Memberships increase leading to greater resources, more choice, flexibility and long term financial stability.

b) Robust, and complete player pathway for both genders from U3 through to OPDL and League 1

c) Raise the quality and quantity of our programming to support all age groups across recreational and competitive programing.

d) Maximum occupancy of our state of the art Indoor Facility and less dependence on external users to fill scheduling gaps.

e) Become the second largest club in the district.

Q. When will the merger happen?

A. The tentative schedule is to have a Special General Meeting in early June for members to cast their vote. Immediately, upon a favourable vote, merger tasks will begin. We are hopeful that the Indoor 2018/19 season will have both clubs representing the same entity even if the branding is not fully transitioned.

Q. What will be the format of the Special General Meeting?

A. There will be one item on the agenda (the merger) which the Board will provide a short presentation on. Following the presentation, the merger will be motioned by 2 members. The members will then vote by secret ballot. The ballot’s will be counted, and the majority will determine the outcome.

Q. How many members will there be?

A. As of the 2017 DRSA Annual General Meeting Pickering had 2391 registered players and Ajax FC had 1933. The combined membership would be 4324 and the second largest club in the district.

Q. How does this affect our relationship with the DRSA (the District)

A. The constitution of the DRSA has a weighted voting system. Each Club holds 1 vote per member within their Club. At the 2017 DRSA Annual General Meeting the District had 20,138 total members. By merging with Ajax, we would have over 21% of the vote. This can be very important when negotiating items to support our Members at a district level.

Q. How are Ajax FC’s financials?

A. As part of the merger process both sets of Club Executives met to review the financial statements of each Club. Combined with Ajax FC the net income for 2018-2019 is forecasted to be positive.

Q. How does the Ontario Soccer Standards affect this?

A. Ontario Soccer is piloting new standards to clubs where the club would be ranked Level 1 to Level 4. Ontario Soccer have not yet finalized the system; however, the tentative Levels would be: Level 1 an OPDL Club, Level 2 a Gold Excellence Club, Level 3 a Silver or Bronze Excellence Club, Level 4 all other clubs. Depending on what level the club is part of will determine which league they can register their teams in. By merging the new Club would likely be a Level 1 Club.

Q. What will the name be?

A. At this time we have not decided on a new name. We will be asking Members to submit suggestions.

Q. Will the Ajax FC Club House remain open?

A. Yes. The club house beside the Ajax Community Centre has become a landmark in the community. There is a long-term lease and there are no plans on closing it. It is an asset which we still plan to use with the main Club Office being based at the Pickering Soccer Centre.

Q. Will this mean I’m travelling across town to play in Ajax?

A. The level of play will define who plays where. We know from experience that Recreational Soccer is very important to the community and the neighbourhood with minimal travel. For Competitive and High- Performance players, we want them to play in the best environment on the best fields. Our technical staff will assess every facet of these programs to provide players with the best experience whether it’s inPickering or Ajax.

Q. What if I have more questions?

A. Please feel free to email the Club President at president@pickeringsoccer.ca. Questions are reviewed daily.

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