Wednesday, March 17, 2021

News: Rotherham United's latest financial results


Rotherham United has posted its latest financial results that covered the team's promotion season back to The Championship - a season cut short by the Coronavirus pandemic.

Accounts filed with Companies House show that turnover was £9.6m for the year ending June 30 2020, down from the £14m for 18/19, and lower than the £10m in the previous season in League One.

Profit before tax was £2.74m for 2019 but for 2020, this had turned into a £1.2m loss before tax.

Chairman Tony Stewart OBE (pictured), founder of successful Rotherham firm, ASD Lighting, saved the Millers in 2008 when he brought the then League Two club out of administration via a Creditors Voluntary Agreement (CVA). Rotherham United Football Club (RUFC) Ltd is wholly owned by ASD Lightings Holdings Ltd, which is owned by the Stewart family.

In March 2020, ASD Lighting Holdings Ltd took up a £2m share issue in the football club which helped to cover a reduction in match day revenue and reduced funding from the League.

With nine matches to go and the Millers sitting in the second automatic promotion spot, the club earned promotion on a points per game basis.

Income in the year was reduced in most areas. Match income and season tickets was £1.7m for 2020 compared to £2.5m for 2019. Central distributions via the Football League reduced from £7.4m for being in The Championship to £2.7m when in League One.

However the books were boosted by over £2m from player sales. The club sold key first team players Will Vaulks and Semi Ajayi during the period.

The accounts show that the club had to withhold from launching its season ticket campaign and not invoice corporate attendees for the season where a potential return of fans was unknown. The club launched an alternative to ticket refunds called "United Rotherham" and provided the opportunity for ticket holders to "rollover" funds for when fans can return.

Legal costs and costs associated with COVID-safe working also affected the balance sheet.

Rotherham United utilised the Government's Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme for £405,000 during the financial year and staff and players went on furlough when the season was halted in March.

The accounts also show that the club took advantage of a bridging loan from the EFL for £128,800.

The accounts conclude that even though net liabilities have been significantly reduced, "the impact of COVID-19 continues to have an impact on income, particularly in respect of match receipts. The directors have prepared cash flow forecasts for the next thtree years that show that the company will have to continue to rely on upon the support of sponsors, in particular its fellow subsidiary company ASD Lighting plc, to enable it to trade as a going concern."

ASD Lighting plc's sponsorship saw £970,000 going into the football club for the year. The club continued to pay £1m during the year to RU Estates, the company established by the Stewart family to construct the £20m New York Stadium.

2020 accounts for ASD Lighting Holdings Ltd are not yet published on Companies House.

RUFC website

Images: RUFC


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