Latest accounts published by Everton FC show COVID-19 cost the club £67.3m in lost revenues with majority shareholder Farhad Moshiri set to up his total investment to £650m. Tony McDonough reports
Everton FC’s majority shareholder Farhad Moshiri is to inject another £250m into the club after it reported record annual losses of more than £134m
In its annual accounts for the year to June 30, 2020, Everton said it had taken a £67.3m hit due to the COVID-19 pandemic, suffering a loss of broadcasting, commercial and matchdays revenues.
The Blues had expected record revues for the year of £220m but the COVID impact saw this figure come in at £185.9m, slightly down on the £187.7m reported in 2019. Pre-tax losses were £134.7m, higher than the £107m loss the year before.
However, Everton commercial, sponsorship, advertising and merchandising revenue was £64m during the 12-month period, more than double the £29m reported in 2019. Total commercial revenue has increased from £26m to £76m over a five-year period between 2014/15 and 2019/20.
Significant investment in the playing squad continued in 2019/20 and is reflected by a spend of £113m within the financial year – with a further £70m invested in the playing squad in advance of the 2020/21 season. The accounts show also a spend of £20m on the £500m Bramley Moore Dock stadium project.
As of November, Mr Moshiri’s total investment in the club totals £400m. His current stake in the club is is 77.2% and his proposed £250m in new investment would take that stake up to 93.3%. The board is proposing to create and issue new shares to Mr Moshiri’s Blue Heaven Holdings Limited.
Everton says this investment will provide a “welcome injection of capital” into the club as it continues to address the significant financial challenges presented by COVID-19. It will include the capitalisation of some previous loans made by Mr Moshiri into equity and greatly strengthens the Club’s balance sheet.
The net debt position was reduced to £2.3m (down from £9.2m in 2018/19) because of the continued support of Mr Moshiri, who contributed an additional £50m within the reporting period.
Everton CEO, Denise Barrett-Baxendale, said: “Clearly this has been a very challenging year, not least from a financial perspective with the impact of COVID-19 having a profound, wide-reaching and material impact on our figures.
“Prior to the pandemic, we were forecasting record revenues in excess of £200m. Our final accounts show that a significant proportion of our losses have been directly attributable to the pandemic.
“However, in this period, it is encouraging that our commercial performance has improved markedly, and this will continue to be a priority moving forward. We have also continued our investment into both our new stadium project – which continues to progress in line with our project plan.
“And, importantly, in strengthening our management and playing staff through the arrival of Carlo Ancelotti and some key additions to our first-team squad. These strategically important projects have been enabled by our majority shareholder, who has further underlined his commitment with additional investment into the Club, in 2019/20 and into this financial year.”