Chesterfield make loss of £400,000 due to global pandemic

The Spireites made a loss of £400,000 in the community trust’s first year in charge of the club because of the Coronavirus pandemic, latest accounts show.

By Liam Norcliffe
Monday, 21st March 2022, 3:37 pm

The newly-released figures are for the first year of the trust’s ownership of the club, up until June 30, 2021, following the purchase from Dave Allen in August 2020.

The loss of £400,177 is mainly down to the global pandemic which caused ‘financial problems’ because fans were not allowed to attend games.

"That, together with no conference and banqueting income, made the year very challenging,” chairman Mike Goodwin said in his statement.

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The Spireites have released their latest accounts.

"Thanks to government grants and loans from Sport England we were able to see the season out.”

A ‘large number’ of employees, including later some players, were put on furlough because of the lack of income.

However, the loss of income was ‘mitigated by insurance cover that applies to such a global pandemic’.

Chief executive John Croot explained: “This is an ongoing process as the business is covered for two years from the first effects of the outbreak. However, all the settled claims from this financial year are included in the accounts. More payments are expected for later losses.”

Turnover was down from £2,943,491 in 2020 to £1,998,962:

Gate and season tickets: £176,793 (down from £700,520) TV and football awards: £276,832 (down from £463,352) Transfer fees: £105,000 (up from £10,098) Commercial income: £521,139 (down from £1,091,461) Other income: £919,197 (up from 678,060)

Other operating income:

Insurance claims receivable: £862,000

Staff costs:

Wages and salaries: £1,895,400 (down from £2,489,876)

In terms of the future, the club faces concerns such as potential future disruptions to finances caused by the pandemic, what league the club will be playing in next season and what affect that will have on income and gate receipts, and how strongly the conference and banqueting and commericial levels will recover as well as how the club will generate sufficient income to pay its debts.

On how they might look to address these issues, Croot said: “While reducing costs is vital where possible, the real opportunities exist in increasing income.

"The hoped for level of goodwill has been evidenced and there seems to be real support for this model and not only among fans. That said there is an indication that the fan-base will turn out in significant numbers.

"As important is the potential to increase commerical and hosptality business in existing streams as well as new and innovative ventures.”

Overall, chairman Goodwin added that he was ‘very pleased’ with the trust’s first season in charge of the club.

Goodwin said: “We have established a platform to go even further next season. Welcoming back supporters is a huge boost and a cornerstone of our financial strategy.

"The appointment of Paul Cook demonstrates the ambition of the club and I am convinced he is the man to lead us forward.

"I think we can say we have put the past behind us and we now truly have a community football club working in tandem with its supporters. I hope we can look to a bright future.”

The club’s AGM takes place this Wednesday at 7.30pm at the Technique.