Everton chairman Bill Kenwright has reiterated that the search for fresh investment remains a priority as the English Premier League club recorded an increased net loss of £9.1 million for the 2011-12 season.
The Merseyside club’s annual financial report detailed that Everton’s losses increased by £3.7 million over the previous campaign, with turnover dropping from £82 million to £80.5 million. Everton finished seventh in the Premier League last season and said its poor start to the campaign resulted in a fall in gate receipts and season ticket sales while the club was selected for fewer live TV games. However, Everton is confident that the current season should bring better fortunes with season ticket sales up 6.4% as the club challenges for a UEFA Champions League spot.
“The club has demonstrated its commitment to first-team success with increased expenditure on player wages,” said Everton chief executive Robert Elstone. “We continue to try to enhance our competitive position and, at the same time, manage cost base and debt levels effectively. To get through a challenging year with only minimal increases in overall debt whilst at the same time, based on the opinions of many experts, strengthening our first-team squad is testament to the skill, hard work and commitment of the manager, the chairman and all their support teams.”
Everton’s net debt remained steady at £46 million and the club will benefit from the Premier League’s bumper new broadcast deal, which takes effect from next season. However, club officials have long sought fresh investment whilst Everton has been further cash-strapped by the matchday revenue generating ability of its Goodison Park home. Kenwright added: “My desire to find a person, or institution, with the finance to move us forward has not diminished. Despite the challenges presented by a global economic downturn, we remain positive and determined.”