English Premier League earns more of world football revenue

The collective turnover of the English Premier League clubs hit a record £2.03 billion in the 2009-10 season and is expected to exceed £2.2 billion in the 2010-11 campaign, according to Deloitte Sports Business Group's 20th Annual Review of Football Finance.

In comparison, the total European football market grew to a record £13.3 billion in 2009-10, with Germany (£1.4 billion), Spain and Italy (£1.3 billion each) and France (£0.9 billion) following the EPL in the revenue stakes. Outside of the ‘big five’ countries, the Netherlands, Turkey and Russia have the largest revenue generating leagues.

EPL clubs’ broadcasting revenue increased by 7% to £1,040m to become the first £1 billion revenue stream of any domestic soccer league. Since 1991/92 it has grown at a staggering compound annual growth rate of 27%. The overseas proportion of total rights values continues to increase (to c.40% of the overall total), reflecting the global appeal of the league.

For a second successive year the increase in EPL clubs' total wage costs of £64 million (5%) exceeded the rise in revenues (£49 million), driving total wages up to over £1.4 billion and resulting in a record wages to revenue ratio of 68%.

Total agents fees paid by EPL and English Football League clubs remained at £80m, representing 13% of the top 92 clubs’ gross transfer expenditure.

Around £3.5 billion has been invested in English football clubs’ stadia and facilities over the last 20 years and capital expenditure by the top 92 professional English football clubs totalled £179 million in 2009/10, the 13th successive season in which total spending has exceeded £150 million.

"Of the £49 million increase in Premier League clubs' revenues, less than 10% (£4 million) fed through to operating profits, which increased from £79 million to £83 million," said Alex Byars, senior consultant in the Sports Business Group at Deloitte. "The challenge for clubs continues to be converting impressive revenue growth into sustainable profits that allow for investment in both infrastructure and talent.

"The record pre-tax losses of £445 million in 2009-10 are a concern, particularly as credit is likely to remain less available to football clubs than it was two or three years ago. This may also, in part, explain why gross transfer spending by Premier League clubs decreased by more than 20% from the record £713 million in 2008-09 to £559 million in 2009-10," he added.

Ironically, BBC correspondent Dan Roan noted by Twitter, as "PL's annual revenues smash thru £2BN barrier for 1st time. Amount it gives to grassroots facilities: £12M." More details in his article 'The Numbers Game - FA facing participation challenge'.

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