Hearts accounts laid bare - record turnover, donation amounts, hotel plan, season ticket waiting list, AGM details
Hearts have announced a record turnover of £20.8million and say the club is in “excellent” financial health after releasing their annual accounts for the year ending June 30, 2023.
Posting a substantial increase in revenue, in part down to improved hospitality figures, increased commercial operations and the team’s run to the group stages of the Europa Conference League, their turnover has risen by 42 per cent. Hearts continue to benefit from support from benefactors – most notably James Anderson – with £4.5m received as gifts from them. The club continues to be backed by the Foundation of Hearts, with £1.6m coming in from the fan group.
Gate receipt revenue rose from £5.2m in 2022 to £6.2m in 2023, with big leaps also recorded in commercial – up to £5.17m from £4.39m – and UEFA solidarity and prize money. Hearts’ participation in the pool phase of Europe’s third-tier competition allowed them to pocked £7.39m in comparison to £3.1m the previous year.
Staff costs have increased from £11.22m to £15.38m, with investments made in both the men’s and women’s squads, as well as improvements off the pitch. The club reports that “other operating charges” totalled £9.07m and that “profit on ordinary activities before interest, depreciation, amortisation and other exceptional items” stands at £2.49m, with profit for the financial year sitting a £298,000, down from £1.75m in 2022. The donations of £6.16m from benefactors and the FoH continue to be of immense benefit to Hearts.
The club’s cash and cash equivalents sat at £5.64m, down from £7.83m in 2022, and hold net assets worth £24.4m. Net cash outflow during the year “amounted to £2.2m, with cash generated from operations of £1.2m, net spend on player and infrastructure investment of £2m and the repayment of loans and financing obligations of £1.4m”. Season-ticket sales continue to be strong, with Hearts saying that they have a waiting list of 7,000 supporters.
Hearts also reported that the hope to open their 25-bedroom hotel at Tynecastle Park later in 2024. Director Ann Budge wrote in the accounts: “This exciting project is being led by our in-house hospitality team and will see us offer even more facilities for our supporters, especially our travelling supporters, while also allowing us to tap into the buoyant Edinburgh tourist market. The construction / fit-out work is being led by our in-house Stadium Manager and it is expected that the 4-star hotel will open for business during the second half of the 2023/24 financial year.”
What the club said
In releasing their accounts, Hearts wrote in a statement: “Financially, this was an excellent year for the club – with record revenues, reinvested in further developing our playing squads (Men’s A and new Men’s B team as well as Women’s A) and our staff teams, continuing to improve the club’s infrastructure, and enhancing Tynecastle Park.
“The 2022/2023 financial year saw Hearts continue a very positive trajectory in terms of developments, both on and off the pitch. Our Men’s A on pitch success in the previous season saw the team qualify for European Football for the first time since 2016/17 season.
“Despite the challenges posed by a heavily congested fixture list exacerbated by the Winter World Cup, our team, our staff, and our fans warmly embraced our European adventure. Memorable journeys took us to St Gallen, Riga, Florence, and Istanbul, where we secured six points in total, scoring in all of our away games. This journey not only offered valuable lessons for our future European endeavours but also brought substantial financial gains to the club, courtesy of prize money, broadcast revenues, and packed stadiums, as is clearly demonstrated in our financial results.
“These financial results were also enhanced by continued investment and focus on our commercial operations to support our on the pitch ambitions. Our commercial teams delivered exceptional results, supported by our dedicated fans. Record-breaking sales in sponsorship, advertising, retail, hospitality, and ticketing were complemented by a sold-out season ticket allocation and a record waiting list. Over the course of the season our commercial operations delivered an increase of £2.1m on the previous year.
“The increase in revenue, along with the ongoing support from the Foundation of Hearts and our generous benefactors, allowed us to substantially increase the investment in our playing budget across all teams as well as our backroom support teams and facilities.
“To keep pace with our turnover growth, we also continue to invest in strengthening our commercial and administrative support teams. Overall staff costs (football and non-football) increased by £4.1m during the season, which demonstrates this ongoing and essential investment. Our operating costs also increased by £2.4m, year on year, reflecting both our increased revenue and the not inconsiderable expenditure from our European participation.
“We are, as always, extremely grateful for the support we receive from all of our supporters, all shareholders including the Foundation of Hearts, benefactors, sponsors, partners and our players and employees. The board would like to express its thanks to every one of these members of the Heart of Midlothian family for their continued and greatly appreciated support.”
Hearts will hold its AGM in the Gorgie Suite at Tynecastle Park on Thursday, December 14 at 11am.