Motherwell Posts Profit Despite Covid Financial Pressures
Motherwell Football Club posted a profit of £346,590 in the year ending 31 May 2020. The profit comes against a loss of £435,970 in 2019, a swing of £782,560.
Despite the hugely difficult restrictions resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic, the club’s turnover rose by nearly £0.4m to £4.95m, up from £4.59m in the previous year.
The SPFL ended the 2019/20 season on 18th May, after games were suspended in March due to the Covid pandemic, with the league’s board deciding the outcome on an average points basis.
This decision meant Motherwell were confirmed a third-place finish in the Scottish Premiership in the 2019/20 season, completing 30 of the campaign’s 38 matches and representing their best league finish for six years.
However, the shortening to the season and the lockdown restrictions, which started in mid-March and are likely to continue until at least the end of the 2020/21 campaign, had a material impact on the club’s ability to generate revenue in the last quarter. Included in that was the loss of at least four home matches, one being a Category A fixture.
Despite this the club continued to trade effectively in the transfer market. The overall figure on player registration gains is up by over £260,000, posting a final figure of £1.04m, compared to £781,000 the previous year.
Costs for the year have remained relatively consistent. There was a slight increase in staff costs, most of which resulted from performance-related bonuses for confirming third place and European football.
During the year the club settled the outstanding amounts owed to Mr J Boyle and Mr L Hutchison. This repayment was facilitated by a small loan on favourable terms, offered by five Motherwell-supporting individuals. The five were all fully repaid less than two months later following James Scott’s sale to Hull.
At the height of lockdown, to ensure sound management of the club’s cashflow, the club took advantage of HMRC schemes to defer VAT and PAYE/NIC liabilities and took out a small £50,000 “bounce back” loan from the UK Government.
The “bounce back” loan is the only external debt on the balance sheet, with the only other borrowings currently being to the Well Society, an accumulation of their contributions across the last nine years, totalling £868,000.
The statement announcing the news warned: “It is our view that the club remains in a strong position, but we are cognisant of the genuine and ongoing threats to the whole football infrastructure from the current crisis. The work that has been done to establish the club’s model and strategy in recent years has been successful, but we have to do more. We must secure the foundations of the club and emerge from the crisis in a sustainable way. Our aim continues to be that of an exemplar fan-owned, community-focused, family club.”