Plymouth Argyle made a loss of close to £1.5 million in their 2018/19 League One relegation campaign, according to figures released by the club.
The Pilgrims’ expenditure of £7,846,000 far exceeded the income of £6,375,800 but the shortfall was made up by owner/chairman Simon Hallett.
Argyle expect to make another loss this season, with Hallett again stepping in to provide the funding to cover that.
The medium term goal is for the club to be sustainable on its own terms, without the need for any intervention from Hallett.
The United States-based businessman has been keen to provide greater transparency over the club’s finances.
The publication of ‘Argyle Finances – building a sustainable future’, which was compiled by club director Paul Berne, is a significant step towards that.
It reveals, for example, that 70 per cent of Argyle’s expenditure in 2018/19 went on salaries.
Wages are paid to three key groups – players, non-playing football staff (the manager and his backroom team), and administrative staff – the people who run the club day-to-day.
The document states: “The other costs of running a football club are significant – costs other than wages are over £2m per year.
“Whilst significant, these costs are carefully managed.
“The costs of upkeep of the stadium, and the costs of simply having a football team (eg travel expenses) are significant, and cannot be avoided.
“Costs include investments, which are vital for the long term future of the club. Investments are made in stadium, infrastructure and other long-term assets.”
Wages accounted for 64 per cent of Argyle’s expenditure in 2017/18 and 60 per cent the previous season, when they were promoted from League Two.
When it came to non-wage expenditure in 2018/19, stadium upkeep costs included £145,600 in rates, £88,900 in pitch maintenance, £73,800 for water as well as £64,800 for heat and light.
Among football costs of £1,030,500 was £196,300 in policing and security and £191,900 in travel costs.
A section described as ‘academy costs/other’ accounted for £473,400.
There were also admin expenses of £491,100, which included legal and professional costs of £103,100.
rgyle’s income in 2018/19 showed a slight increase of £161,800 compared to £6,214,000 the previous season.
Revenue from tickets accounted for 42 per cent of that total, with 31 per cent coming from the EFL and prize money from various competitions.
Money from advertising and sponsorship of the club made up eight per cent of the expenditure.
Transfer income, as well as the club shop and programme, accounted for seven per cent each, with catering at six per cent.
The document states: “The long term stability of the club involves reliance upon ticketing income.
“However, it is vital to grow other income streams (eg advertising).”
Income streams for 2018/19 included £1,431,800 for season tickets and £901,400 for league home tickets.
That compared to £1,195,300 for season tickets the previous year and £1,131,600 for league home tickets.
Argyle received £829,700 in EFL distributions in 2018/19, plus a £632,500 EFL solidarity payment and £448,000 academy grant.
Overall, ticket income was £2,654,800 while football income was £1.973,100.
The document concludes with a ‘Fit for the future’ section. Under a section entitled ‘Stable Base’ it states: “Loans have been reduced through capital injections from shareholders.
“Development of the grandstand (capital spend in 2018/19 and 2019/20) has been funded by major shareholder.”
A section entitled ‘Future Outlook’ highlights the importance of the income to be generated by the redeveloped Mayflower Grandstand when it opens at the end of this year.
The document states: “Expenditure will outstrip income again for 2019/20 – shortfall to be funded by shareholders.
“The grandstand helps provide a platform for greater income.
“The club requires continued investment to improve to represent best quality (stadium, infrastructure, grandstand, etc.). The aim is to provide long-term assets for the club.”
The full document can be read : [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]