Aston Villa Accounts May 2015 Quick Review
Aston Villa’s accounts today became viewable at Companies House and the outlook isn’t looking too good as predicted.
- Wages and salaries cost up 23%+
- Villa CEO Salary up around 400% to £1.25m
- 12% drop in Commercial income (including merchandise)
- Gate Receipt Income 8% up due mainly to FA Cup run
- Pre-tax loss increase from £3.9m in 2014 to £27.8m in 2015
- Club still up for sale
While chalking up what is described as their worst performance in the league since the Premier League was formed in 1992, despite two trips to Wembley including an FA Cup final, the club’s revenue was down on the previous season. Pre-tax loss has stretched to £27.8m for the year to 31 May 2015, compared with a loss of £3.9m in 2014.
Despite public claims by Aston Villa’s CEO Tom Fox that commercial income such as shirt sales were performing better, it isn’t mirrored in this round of accounts with the commercial figure (that includes merchandise, royalties, conference and banqueting) down by 2.5m. Although, accounts would include the merchandise spend boost for the club of fans preparing for their two trips to Wembley in the FA Cup.
Club sponsorship and partnership income was up 1.5m though and gate receipt revenue was up 1m too (largely due to home ties in the FA Cup run), but with broadcasting income down on top of commercial, the overall figure is a slight downturn as seen in the below table:
With all the talk (excuses) in recent seasons about the need to keep players wages and staff costs down, the latest accounts show a rise of just over 23% in wages and salaries, and that is the main reason for the increase in Villa’s pre-tax losses in last year’s accounts.
The restructuring of Villa’s director personnel has also shown a significant cost increase.
And that can be attributed principally by Tom Fox joining the club as CEO, with him being the only director that the following salary can be be attributed to:
When you consider the results of this season and the peril that the club is now facing, the appointment of Tom Fox on such a salary must currently rank as Randy Lerner’s worst ever appointment, eclipsing even making Alex McLeish manager, in terms of the damage that it could potentially do the club.
While you can mitigate that a lot was wrong with the club before Fox came to Villa Park, at the end of last season with an upturn in form and an FA Cup final, you wouldn’t have predicted such a sharp and shocking demise this season. All of which has to be attributed to Fox’s restructuring, new personnel letting the Villa CEO down and whether or not Lerner gave him enough resources to fully carry out his intended plans.
With the financial stalwart duo of Steve Hollis and Mervyn King now on the Villa board, it will be very interesting to see Villa’s accounts over the next two years, and, it has to be said, whether Tom Fox’s salary will be included in them.
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