Sunday, June 21, 2020

The footballer on the move

So now things move on
He was trained by the Howarth brothers who operated market stalls from Wigan market.
People like our footballing friend are always on the lookout for new ideas.
He spotted an opening!
There were goods which were being sold by chemists only, theese goods were sold with a big mark up.
He got some small stores and negotiated goods to be supplied at a keen price.
He built up his new business and the number of stores grew.
Back in the 70's the trucks would stock up the stores to the ceiling, opening at 9am the shelves were all bare at 2pm.
The very idea that there was a shortage created a need in the business.
He sold it and went to America for 18 months to study supermarket management.
He built up the business Whelan Discount stores which he sold to Morrisons when it took off.

Did he retire? 

Well no

He bought a football club Wigan Athletic and brought the team to the first division.
He also built a fine stadium.

Then there was the adventure that was JJB Sports, plenty of strategy there as well and he built it up to great heights. I was told that he was going to sell out when he was convinced to sell shares in the company and the guys with clip boards came in and started overruling his power.
What did he do?
He sat back and when the share price fell through the floor he bought it all back.
The guy who told me the story said that some of the directors went to prison !

So he sold out when the ship was back on course .
Today he runs DW Sports and fitness centers around the Yorkshire and Lancashire area.

So that is the 83 year old Dave Whelan

Look hard  and and keep your eye out for opportunities

Some people say he was lucky
Others say he made his own luck

Thursday, June 18, 2020

Opening up?

So things have started to move like Molasses on a hot day.
The pubs will open at the end of the month under strict rules.
It is a new age we are going into.
I never imagined I would walk into a bank wearing a mask and demand money and there would be no panic.
A guy rang B&Q the other day and asked the young lad how big was the queue, the lad at the other end said
"Its the same size as the B"
In Lidl the other day an old guy was wiping tree sap off his car. I spoke to him for a few minutes and then I remembered that I had a car cover in my garage. (Brand new) and he could have it for €20.
He never rang, so I looked it up on Amazon and it costs £30 +postage. Ah well.
You win some you loose some.

Here is a story that I will give you in installments.

A footballer broke his leg which disqualified him from playing in the cup final.
His team won but he did not get a medal.

He was very depressed and he had a good mate who asked him to come with him to Sheffield market and be his Shill. There would be banter and then he would go off and take a break and start again in an hour.
The footballer soon copped on that the market stall holder was as clever as a fox, so he learned from him, the cut and thrust, the quips and banter.
The the dealer asked him if he had a passport? When the answer was yes he told him to come to the south of France with him for a rest and the heat would do him good.
The stall holders family owned a villa in the south of France ! (Back in the 60s)they used it in rotation.
No one ever sat out except at night.
Who the hell would trust a dealer with a suntan!

Then over 4 weeks the dealer trained him how to sell a line.
His product was magnetic window cleaners.
With the jokes an his own Shil in the crowd he was a big hit when he came back to England.

To be continued.

Tuesday, June 16, 2020


It is the 16 th of June when all the Wags of Dublin and elsewhere gather to celebrate Bloomsday.
The book Ulysses written by James Joyce, read by the few and understood by fewer.

I know senator David Norris very well and I said to him that I just don't understand that book.
"My God I can't believe it a Dublin taxi driver who can't understand Ulysses. It is what is going on in your head now. The thoughts travel at lightening speed, so fast that there is no rime to put spaces or punctuation between the words. How can you describe the swishing of the waves? Joyce does it in a spectacular fashion. Free your mind and read it again."

Joyce had to go to Paris to get it published (Shakespeare and Company)
His wife Nora Barnacle used to say "Why couldn't you write a book that people could read?"