'The best year of our collective lives' - Johnson and Schwartz messages on takeover anniversary

Thumbs up from the new owners at Portman Road

Ipswich Town co-owner Brett Johnson - Credit: Ray Lawrence

Ipswich Town owner Brett Johnson has reflected on his first year at the helm of the club. 

Johnson, one of the Blues’ ‘Three Lions’ who help form the Gamechanger 20 group which bought the club from Marcus Evans a year ago, sent a video message to supporters to mark the anniversary. 

“Happy one-year anniversary Ipswich Town,” he said. On behalf of all of us at Gamechanger 20 it’s been arguably the best year of our collective lives. 

“I know for me personally, I’ve laughed, I’ve cried, I’ve bled (after celebrating Wes Burns’ goal at Wimbledon), I’ve been concussed, I’ve received stitches and that was all just from one game. The good news is I’m healing well and next time I’m at Portman Road I’m going to insist that Wes Burns signs my scar. 

“But in the meantime, happy anniversary and thank you all for your incredible support of our relationship, our partnership, our union, if you will. I can’t wait to celebrate more anniversaries with each other. Onward and upward. Come on you Blues, uppa Town!” 

Along with Mark Detmer and Berke Bakay, Johnson was the public face of the Town takeover last April, with the trio owning a combined 5% of the Gamechanger group which now owns around 90% of Ipswich Town Football Club. 

The majority, though, is owned by ORG Portfolio Management, the investment fund which managed money on behalf of the Arizona’s Public Safety Personnel Retirement System (PSPRS). 

Ed Schwartz is ORG’s representative on the board of Gamechanger, while Mark Steed is the chief investment officer of the pension fund.

Schwartz said: "The last year has flown by and on behalf of the American investor group, I would like to say how amazed we all are with the rate of progress being made at Ipswich Town FC both on and off the pitch.

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"We are truly humbled by the wonderfully warm welcome we have received from the club's fans. Their vocal support for the team, home and away, and the increasing numbers coming to games are incredibly encouraging for us.

"I should like to restate our unconditional commitment to creating a solid infrastructure to ensure Ipswich Town's long-term sustainable success.

"We could not be more proud to be part of the rebirth of such a special club."