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04.07.2008 12:03

Economy up for fifth consecutive year


FC Barcelona's economic balance is positive for the fifth consecutive year, with a profit of €10.1m. Income has grown and that has seen more money being generated as well as reducing the debt even further.

The club's economic vice president, Ferran Soriano, addressed the media in a press conference on Friday and he explained that income has gone up €18.7m more than last season and €185.4m more than five years ago. The expenses have been controlled to give an operational profit of €16.1m and clear profit of €10.1m.

"A strong club"

40708_RPSoriano_x4x.jpgWith this data, Soriano reaffirmed that the club's economic model is "strong and has resisted changes with wins or defeats" and added that "a sustainable model that is consolidated and self-financed. Barça is solid, solvent, secure and competitive".

To show this evolution, Soriano compared the data from the last ten years which has seen the club go from having an income of €437m, between 1998 and 2003, to €1.235m, between 2003 and 2008. Also, he emphasised that the yearly profit has gone from being in the negative, at minus €145.7m between 1998 and 2003, to being in the positive, with €87.9m, in the last five years.

Banking debt to zero

Soriano then explained that the club had reduced its net debt by €28 and its bank debt by €26.2m (from €39.8m to €13.6) improving in all areas. In this sense, Soriano has reported that in October 2008 the €13m debt to banks will be finally be eradicated.

Healthy debt

40708_RPSoriano.jpgDespite the fact that the club maintains a debt of €190m, Soriano said that "a level of debt in a business like this is a healthy debt". The fact is that "the club has tripled in size and the debt has not gone up".

More land

The real estate portfolio has been strengthened last season when the club bought land in Viladecans for €26.2m. "We have invested a lot more than we have let go," Soriano said. "We are happy with the management of the estates because the club now has more assets," Soriano continued. Since 2003, Barça have gone from owning 867,331m² of land to now owning 1,133,408m². The current value has risen from €139m to €201.4m.
Economy up for fifth consecutive year

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Budget: biggest income in the world
During the 2008/09 campaign, FC Barcelona expect to have a turnover of €380m, €71.2 more than last year. It will be an historic budget, as it will see Barça become a leader in terms of income in the world of sport, more than American professional sports clubs too.

One of the main reasons that the income will go up so much is due to the recovery of the FC Barcelona merchandising licenses, that up to now the club had shared with Nike. Also, there is a new television deal that will see the amount go up from €116.2m to €134m. Barça also expect to see higher income from gate receipts, executive boxes and other facilities.

On the expenses front, the club foresees that the first team will cost €105.3m fixed with a further €33.6 in variables. Sporting personnel will take home €177.3m, which will be higher than last year's total of €162.2.

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