Premier League revenues break £3bn mark

Liverpool v Manchester City Liverpool and Manchester City have been at the forefront of increasing overall Premier League revenues

Premier League clubs' revenues broke the £3bn mark in the recent 2013-14 season, say analysts at Deloitte.

They say the figure has been hit just four years after passing £2bn, and that revenues have doubled in seven years.

"A remarkable achievement in isolation, but phenomenal in the wider economic context of that same period," said Dan Jones, head of Deloitte's sports team.

He said the battle between TV firms for Premier League rights was key to driving the league's revenues higher.

"The entry of BT Sport into the market to compete with BSkyB has applied huge upward pressure to broadcast revenue - from the 2013-14 season onwards each domestic live game on average generates broadcast revenue of £6.5m," said Mr Jones, in Deloitte's Annual Review of Football Finance.


  • Total revenues of £2.52bn
  • Total revenues up by 7% (on a UK sterling basis)
  • Overall operating profits fell by 2%
  • Average player salary was £1.6m
  • Premier League clubs' revenues ranged from £363m (Manchester United) to £58m (Wigan Athletic)
  • Commercial revenue was the main area of growth (up 21%)
  • Majority of increase in commercial revenues was down to the two Manchester clubs and Liverpool
  • Broadcast revenue rose only marginally, but matchday revenue grew by 6%
  • Pre-tax losses of £316m, compared with £245m a year earlier
  • By summer 2013, Premier League net debt was £2.5bn, slightly up on 2012

Source: Deloitte

"It is clear that BT Sport's entry is not a passing fad but a serious, focused, long-term commitment."

In 2013-14 top flight clubs benefitted, on average, from an extra £25m in broadcast revenue.

'Razor thin' margins

While providing a snapshot of the 2013-14 season, the Deloitte report looks at the 2012-13 season in greater depth.

There were positive signs in the Premier League, with revenues rising to £2.5bn for the first time, but the perennial issues of high wages and debts remained.

Premier League operating profits decreased slightly, and Deloitte said clubs were operating on "razor thin" margins. Wage costs as a percentage of revenues hit a new high of 71%.

Clubs' aggregate net debt grew by £139m to a total of more than £2.5bn by summer 2013.

Deloitte says this was largely driven by an increase in interest-free "soft loans" from owners of £228m.

In fact soft loans totalled £1.6bn, up from £1.4bn a year earlier, represented close to two-thirds of total net debt.

Start Quote

Sir Alex Ferguson

In Manchester United's first Premier League title winning season, 1992-93, clubs generated average revenue of £9m. As Sir Alex signed off, the average top flight club generated revenue of £125m and his own club made almost three times as much”

End Quote Deloitte Annual Review of Football Finance

Some 90% of this figure was attributable to four Premier League clubs - Chelsea, Newcastle United, Aston Villa and Queens Park Rangers,

However, Deloitte expects Uefa's Financial Fair Play break-even requirements - which saw Manchester City punished last month for breaching the rules - to focus clubs' minds on balancing their books.

"The signs are that most clubs are adopting a more financially robust and balanced approach to the way they run their businesses, and they must continue down this path if they are to safeguard the long term financial health of the game," Mr Jones said.

'Global perspective'

Meanwhile, the growing global appeal of the English Premier League could be seen in the fact that during 2012-13 half of the clubs had foreign owners, compared with only one 10 years earlier.

International owners have "also influenced the increasingly global commercial perspective driving clubs' business plans, as well as helping the overall export of the Premier League brand around the globe", say Deloitte.

It says it is only a matter of time before there is an owner or major sponsorship deal from China, where the Premier League is a major consumer brand.

The drive to achieve promotion to the Premier League saw Championship clubs gamble heavily in 2012-13.

Wage costs exceeded revenues in the Championship for the first time in 12 years, leading to a record wage-to-revenue ratio of 106% and record operating losses of £241m.

Juventus players celebrate a goal Juventus drove the growth in revenues in Italy's Serie A
Big clubs dominate

Looking more broadly at the "Big Five" European leagues - England, Germany, Italy, France and Spain - revenues grew 5% to 9.8bn euros.

That represented almost half of the overall size of the European football market of 19.9bn euros.

Much of the growth was at a limited number of big clubs, such as Juventus.

In Italy, revenues grew by 97m euros in 2012-13, three quarters of which was down to Juventus.

Broadcast revenue continued to be the key source of income for Italian clubs, contributing 59% of their total revenues.

Everton's Belgian forward Romelu Lukaku v Newcastle United

The Business of European Football

League Revenue 2012-13 Wages 2012-13

Premier League, England

2.9bn euros

2.1bn euros (71% of revenue)

Bundesliga, Germany

2bn euros

1bn euros (51% of revenue)

La Liga, Spain

1.9bn euros

1bn euros (56% of revenue)

Serie A, Italy

1.7bn euros

1.2bn euros (71% of revenue)

Ligue 1, France

1.3bn euros

0.9bn euros (66% of revenue)

Source: Deloitte

Germany's Bundesliga continued to be the only big five league where income from TV rights was not the largest revenue source. Instead, commercial revenue, which accounted for 46% of the total, dominated.

The Bundesliga also remained the league with the strongest cost control, with a wages-to-revenue ratio of 51%.

In Scotland, generated by top tier clubs fell by £4m in 2012-13. The impact of Rangers competing outside the top flight was largely offset by additional revenues generated by Celtic's run to the last 16 of the Champions League.

More on This Story

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

More Business stories


BBC Business Live


    Airbus confirms it has cancelled a deal for six A380 superjumbos for Japan's Skymark airline. The statement came a few hours after Skymark said it was locked in "difficult" talks over the order. There doesn't seem to be the vastest amount of confidence in Skymark's finances. Shares closed down 13% in Tokyo earlier.

     bitcoin medals

    Bitcoin is big in Romania, says Reuters. The citizen's of Europe's second poorest country apparently remain distrustful of officialdom but are also tech savvy. Reuters adds Romania is among the worst at collecting taxes and fighting fraud, making it poorly equipped to manage the bitcoin.


    Some 27,029 people went into personal insolvency in the second quarter of this year, a 5.1% increase on the same quarter last year, official figures from the Insolvency Service show.

    MARKET UPATE 09:36:

    European shares are mixed. They started out good after a batch of encouraging company results. Retailer Next is among the big winners - up 2.45% to 6680p on the FTSE 100 so far.

    • The FTSE is 0.12% higher at 6796.35
    • Germany's Dax has just turned negative and is now 0.09% lower at 9589.54
    • The French Cac-40 is also down 0.18% at 4336.92
    Via Twitter Adam Parsons Business Correspondent

    tweets: "Next now worth slightly more than Sainsbury's and Morrison's put together."

    GHERKIN SALE 09:14:
    An aerial view of the "City", London"s business disctrict

    London landmark and general troubled child of the City's tall buildings, the Gherkin - otherwise known as 30 St Mary Axe - has been put up for sale for £64m. It was put into receivership with accountants Deloitte managing the place since April. Co-owners Evans Randall and German firm IVG told it to put it up for sale after they failed to reach a deal with their lenders over restructuring the building's mounting debts.


    Back to the proposed bankers' oath. Would it mean an end to such fines as the £218m Lloyds received yesterday for fiddling rates? Think tank ResPublic, which operates "on the premise that human relationships should once more be positioned as the centre and meaning of an associative society", hopes so. Click here to read what it suggests are the magic words.

    RUSSIAN SANCTIONS 08:45: BBC Radio 4
    Russian President Vladimir Putin

    Former foreign secretary Sir Malcolm Rifkind is talking to the Today programme about the potential impact of sanctions on Russia. He says President Putin is unconcerned about his popularity at home. "This isn't about his popularity this is about imposing sanctions that will require Putin to change his policy," he says. Up to now, he says, sanctions have been "pretty useless". Sanctions need to be about serious economic damage to Russia, he adds.

    UBS PROBE 08:35:
    The floor of the New York Stock Exchange on 28 March, 2014.

    The "Dark Pools" investigation widens to include UBS. The Swiss bank became the latest bank to say it is cooperating with inquiries about these alternative trading systems. Its second quarter report this morning said a clutch of US regulators, including the Securities and Exchange Commission, the New York Attorney General, and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority had made inquiries. Banks Barclays and Credit Suisse are also involved in probes.


    Separately the US State Department has accused Russia of violating a key arms control treaty by testing a nuclear cruise missile. Russia tested a ground-launched cruise missile, breaking the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty signed in 1987 during the Cold War, the US says. A senior US official described it as "very serious" but gave little more in the way of detail.

    PAY KICK? 08:13:

    Two fund managers overheard on the 06:45 to Vauxhall: "It's called a pay away, not a kick back." Business Live (not being perfect) does not know what this means. Any ideas?

    RUSSIAN SANCTIONS 08:05: BBC Radio 4

    One more from Malcolm Bracken on Today. He doesn't mince his words. He says: "Putin has looted an enormous amount of money from the Russian people." Mr Bracken adds he doesn't think the aim of sanctions will be to "devastate the Russia economy or isolate it from the world." But squeezing "the cronies" will be language Mr Putin can understand, he says.

    NEXT PROFITS 07:53:
    Woman in picture

    Next also has results. First half profits at the clothing and homeware retailer rose 10.7%. Next tells investors to stand by for better profits of between £775m and £815m. Sales at the physical stores were up 7.5% and through the Next Directory were 16.2% higher.

    BP PROFITS 07:43:

    BP says rising oil and gas production from new or recently started projects led to increased processing of heavy crude oil by the newly-modernised Whiting refinery contributed to operating cash flow of $7.9bn in the quarter. Total operating cash flow for the first half of 2014 was $16.1bn.

    RUSSIAN SANCTIONS 07:36: BBC Radio 4

    The purpose of sanctions is to target the regime and [Russian president] Putin's cronies, not really the Russian people, Malcolm Bracken, analyst at Redmayne Bentley, tells the Today programme. "The mismatch," he says "Is that Russia needs German money from gas sales even more than Germany needs Russia gas." Germany can get its gas from countries other than Russia, he adds. But Putin can impose far greater economic pain on his people than Angela Merkel can on hers.

    Signage for Morrisons supermarket on a trolley handle

    There's confirmation that former Tesco finance director Andrew Higginson will become the the new chairman of rival supermarket Morrison's when Sir Ian Gibson retires in 2015. Mr Higginson will join the board on 1 October as non-executive deputy chairman. He was finance director at Tesco between 1997 and 2012. He is currently chairman of Poundland, N Brown Group and McCurrach UK as well as a non-executive director at BSkyB.

    BP PROFITS 07:17:
    British Petroleum sign

    BP has reported profits (second-quarter replacement cost profit - which strips out the effect of oil price movements) of $3.2bn, compared with $2.4bn a year earlier.

    BIG CHEESE 07:13: BBC Breakfast

    The biggest event in the global cheese calendar starts today in Nantwich in Cheshire. Steph McGovern is at the International Cheese Fair for Breakfast along with the 4,500 cheeses there. Andrew Loftus, agriculture manager for Morrison's supermarkets says: "Customers need a big variety, the block cheese, the cheddars, but we also have our own range that we cut and grate in our factories."

    BANKING ETHICS 07:03: Radio 5 live

    Control Risks' Charles Hecker on Wake Up to Money pulls together the two big topics of the morning - Russia and banking ethics. He says it's the ethics that attract them: "There is a reason why the British banking sector is by a mile the preferred destination for Russian financial transactions. It's seen as transparent and liquid market that is well regulated and is seen as clean." And they also like the flight time and the restaurants, he says.

    UBS RESULTS 06:53:
    The logo of Swiss bank UBS

    Swiss bank UBS reports second quarter net profit of 792m Swiss francs (£516m), up from 690m francs last time. Results were whacked last year by a $885m settlement with the US housing regulator over the mis-selling of mortgage-backed bonds. The bank has still had to set aside 254m euros (£165.4m) this year, mainly to settle legal claims that it helped wealthy Germans to dodge taxes.

    RUSSIAN SANCTIONS 06:41: BBC Radio 4

    In case you were wondering why sanctions were back on the news menu, last week, European leaders agreed there should be tougher sanctions on Russia after Ukrainian separatists brought down Malaysia Airlines MH17. This week they decide what sanctions should be applied and against whom or what.

    BANKING ETHICS 06:31: Radio 5 live
    Triumph of Virtue and Nobility

    Would getting bankers to swear an oath promising good behaviour work? That's a suggestion by one think tank, ResPublica. It wants to introduce "Virtuous Banking". But the chairman of the Banking Standards Review Council, Sir Richard Lambert, tells Wake Up to Money an oath won't help to bring that about.

    GAS GUZZLER 06:21:
    Mayor of London Boris Johnson

    London mayor Boris Johnson wants the drivers of diesel cars to pay an extra £10 - on top of the congestion charge it should be noted - for the pleasure of driving into the centre of the capital according to a report in the Daily Mail today. Other cities are also considering introducing low-emission zones to crack down on diesel fumes. These cars were once encouraged as being less polluting...

    RUSSIAN SANCTIONS 06:08: Radio 5 live

    More from Charles Hecker. He tells Wake Up to Money: "I don't think anybody is that keen on sanctions that are going to impact on their own economic sectors." Part of the problem with European sanctions against Russia is the French have defence deals with Russia, there is a substantial amount of Russia money in the UK's financial services sector and Germany has energy deals with Russia, he adds

    RUSSIAN SANCTIONS 06:01: Radio 5 live

    Charles Hecker of consultancy Control Risks tells Wake Up to Money targeted sanctions, whether against sectors of the Russian economy or against individuals, would have a potential impact and suggests the Russian economy is already teetering on the edge of recession. But he adds both Cuba and Iran have been subject to far more stringent sanctions and that further sanctions against Russia are unlikely to change the country's behaviour.

    06:00: Rebecca Marston Business reporter, BBC News

    Yes, we're back. And we're here: @bbcbusiness - should you wish to get in touch.

    06.00: Matthew West Business Reporter

    Morning everyone. Yesterday afternoon we had a £218m fine for Lloyds for its part in the 2012 Libor scandal, while the think-tank ResPublica has suggested this morning bankers should take an oath - a bit like doctors - to fulfil their "proper moral and economic purpose". We also have second quarter trading updates from BP and Next this morning, plus more on Russian sanctions.



BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.