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Premiership clubs’ accounts reveal uncertain future as losses double

The company which controls Wasps and the Ricoh Arena has seen its annual pre-tax losses double, with the group still reliant on support from its millionaire owner.

Net debt in the accounts for the year ending June 2018, including a £35million bond, now stands at £55.8m and the total owed to Irish millionaire owner Derek Richardson hitting £18.6million, up from £12.9m in 2017.

The latest accounts for Wasps Holdings Ltd, which includes Wasps, stadium operators Arena Coventry Limited and events company IEC Experience Ltd, shows much of the increased losses were down to one-off items.

This includes paying out £400,000 this year alone to fight a legal battle over the sale of the Ricoh Arena with the parent companies of tenants Coventry City.

Other key figures:

  • The group made a total loss before tax of £9.7m compared to £4.7m last year.
  • Income has dropped by £200,000 since last year, with £32.8m made in the year ending 30 June, 2018 compared to £33m the year before. Wasps made up £15.5m of that, with ACL bringing in £3.6m and IEC adding £13.7m.
  • The club’s total operating loss has increased to £6.3m from £2.2m.
  • The club’s operating loss before depreciation, exceptional items (including the court costs) and allocation to non-controlling interests fell from a £1.3m profit to a loss of £2.1m.
  • The Ricoh Arena has retained its £60m value, and is next due for a revaluation in 2019.
  • Consolidated senior debt has risen to £37.3m from £35.5m mainly owed to Wasps Finance PLC, Barclays PLC and HSBC PLC. Owner Derek Richardson is also now owed £18.6m up by £5.7m since the previous year’s accounts.
  • Revenue per available room at the hotel increased by six per cent to £52.
  • Bond related costs amounted to £200,000 for the year.
  • Record season ticket sales for Wasps grew 19 per cent year on year

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