ARSENAL Football Club, currently top of the English Premiership, boosted its football revenue in the latest trading year to £242.8 million from £235.3m mainly due to its ongoing commercial partnership with the Emirates.
However, the club, which recently broke its transfer record with the acquisition of Real Madrid and Germany star Mesut Ozil, revealed that pre-tax profit fell to £6.7m from £36.6m in the year to end-May 2013.
This was largely due to a much lower profit on players sold in the period, including star striker Robin van Persie – £47m compared to £65.5m in the previous year.
Arsenal’s underlying operating profits from football fell to £25.2m from £32.3m, as the club’s wage costs rose 7.7 per cent to £154m. The wage bill as a percentage of football revenues rose in the year to 63.6 per cent from 61 per cent. Sir Chips Keswick, chairman of Arsenal Holdings, said the club had to continue to grow commercially to provide the best opportunity for achieving footballing success.
He said the club’s “strong financial platform” created in recent years allowed it “to be competitive at the highest level”.
The year saw a new agreement with the Emirates to extend their shirt sponsorship until 2019 and their stadium naming rights to 2028.