Only one Premier League club did not earn an operating profit in the 2013-14 season, a Deloitte review has revealed.
Clubs in the English top flight were beneficiaries of “a new broadcast rights cycle” in Manchester City’s title-winning season, with £3.26 billion of revenue generated collectively – a rise of 29 per cent from the season prior.
Partner with Deloitte’s Sports Business Group, Dan Jones said the TV rights deal was key to securing profit for clubs in the top tier.
As a result, 19 of the 20 Premier League sides recorded an operating profit, and 14 of those banked a pre-tax profit.
“The impact of the Premier League’s broadcast deal is clear to see,” Jones said via a statement.
“Broadcast income increased by £569m in 2013/14, accounting for 78 per cent of the overall growth in revenue in the Premier League. Continued growth in both commercial and matchday revenue helped Premier League clubs’ combined revenues reach £3.26 billion – a staggering increase of £735m compared with the season before.
“In 2013/14 even the Premier League club receiving the least from domestic league broadcast distributions earned more from this source than all but five other European clubs.
“Following recent announcements of commercial deals for a host of the largest clubs, we expect the Premier League to surpass the Bundesliga in commercial revenue terms and hence lead the world in all three key revenue categories from 2014/15.”
Deloitte also found the Premier League’s rate of wage paying had dropped.
“Premier League clubs also showed relative restraint in terms of wage costs, with less than 20 per cent of their revenue growth being absorbed by wage costs,” Jones added.
“Indeed, the Premier League’s wages to revenue ratio reduced to 58 per cent (from 71 per cent) in 2013/14, the lowest it has been since the 1998/99 season.
“The current broadcast deal also comes as cost control regulations, at both domestic and European level, have caused many clubs to rein in their spending relative to the revenue they are now capable of generating.
“The end result has been a remarkable turnaround in profitability.”
Deloitte also found Championship clubs were over-spending in their bid to get a slice of the riches on offer in the Premier League – with wages continuing to dwarf revenue.
The 13-14 season saw Championship clubs spend £518m paying players, while only earning £491m.
“Championship clubs continue to deliver some alarming financial results,” Deloitte senior consultant Adam Bull said.
“Whilst the desire of individual clubs to reach the promised land of the Premier League is understandable, and heightened given the value of the new broadcast deals, The Football League is right to try and ensure this is not at the expense of the long-term sustainability of any club.”
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