Costs related to the pandemic have been far-reaching and its initial bearing on revenue is reflected in our 2019/20 accounts. Together with a long-term strategy of investment in infrastructure and personnel – which has resulted in significant on-and-off-pitch progress – this contributed to a pre-tax loss of £67.3M for the year ending 31 May 2020 (£20.2M in 2019).
The interruption of the 2019/20 season in March significantly affected both costs and revenue during the final three months of the season, as well as the financial period in which they are accounted. Principal costs such as the majority of the Club’s contribution to the Premier League’s broadcaster rebate, were borne in the accounts before the year-end, while the extension of the season’s conclusion has meant almost a quarter of Premier League revenues, prize money and sponsorship revenue will be not recognised as income until the 2020/21 financial year.
Such timing variances contributed to a decrease in turnover to £150M (from £178.4M in 2019).
The Club did not utilise the government’s Job Retention Scheme, retained all permanent staff and, from its own funds, continued to pay the wages of all casual matchday and non-matchday personnel to the financial year-end, despite matches being suspended between March and May. Much of the Club’s available human resource was deployed as part of a COVID-19 community response, offering personal, operational and financial support to the people and organisations in Leicester most affected by the pandemic.
The Club has also further invested towards long-term financial growth, through the acquisition of land adjacent to the ground that will be critical to the proposed future expansion and development of King Power Stadium.
Long-term financial stability that enabled the Club to support its people through an unprecedented challenge has been provided by the Srivaddhanaprabha family through King Power International.
Susan Whelan, Leicester City Chief Executive, said: “While the early impact of COVID-19 on commercial revenues is clear, 2019/20 was still a season of considerable progress. On the pitch, we secured a return to European football with our second highest ever Premier League finish and, off it, we were able to support our people through times of hardship, further strengthening the bond between the Club and its communities.
“Those two principles – of exciting footballing progress and our role as a force for good for our people and our community – are fundamental to the Club’s vision and products of our efforts to reinvest revenues generated into the Club’s long-term future, even in difficult times.
“The commitment of the Club’s parent company also underpins our long-term ambition to be a consistent challenger domestically and a competitor in Europe each season – a vision of which sustainable reinvestment in our football operation is a key component. Our 2019/20 accounts include significant investments relating to the development of our new training centre in Seagrave, as well as considerable further investment in our First Team playing squad, the benefits of which have been evident in sporting performance this season.
“An end to those difficult times of the last year is now hopefully in sight and we look forward to continuing our pursuit of that vision, with our supporters once again a visible, audible and integral part of the Leicester City journey.”
Full accounts can be downloaded HERE.
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