The Seagulls have reduced losses in their latest set of accounts.
Brighton and Hove Albion have successfully cut their annual losses but still lost £10.6 million last season.
The club has filed its latest set of accounts – for the year ending June 30, 2014 – with Companies House and the Football League, with turnover increasing by £600,000 to £24 million while operational costs have dropped by £4.5 million to £12.1 million.
Those figures helped the cub increase its football budget by just shy of £1 million to £20.7 million – meaning Oscar Garcia did indeed enjoy a better budget than his predecessor Gus Poyet, as previously suggested by the club.
Commercial revenues rose by 16% to £4.9 million and the club also enjoyed a 9.5% rise in ticket sales – from £9.5 million to £10.4 million helped by attendances increasing from an average of 26,236 the season before to 27,283 in the period covered by the latest accounts.
The sales of Liam Bridcutt and Ashley Barnes contributed to a £1.7 million profit on player trading. Subsequent sales of Will Buckley and Leo Ulloa for a combined total believed to be in excess £10 million, will be in the next set of accounts.
The upshot of the accounts is that Brighton met strict Football League rules on Financial Fair Play (FFP). Some of the losses fell outside the parameters included in FFP rules meaning the club falls under the £8 million FFP loss limit.
Albion chairman Tony Bloom, who has invested around £200 million in the club, said: “I want to take this opportunity to look back on our first three years at the American Express Community Stadium and to give an update on our on-going strategy for the club’s future.
“By its nature, this statement is as much for our supporters as it is for our shareholders. We are all “stakeholders” in this great club – emotionally, financially or both.
“We all have a significant part to play in realising an ambition that, despite just four seasons playing at the highest level in our club’s entire history, is an exciting prospect for our club, our city, and the wider county of Sussex.”
Paul Barber, the club’s chief executive, was also pleased with the reduction in overall loss.
He said: “This set of results shows a significant improvement on the previous year’s annual accounts, and that is thanks to a lot of hard work by our staff to reduce our costs and boost revenues.
“The board is delighted with the reduction in our operating costs and the increase in turnover of more than £24m – thanks in no small part to the support of the fans, as we once again enjoyed the highest average attendance – but we continue to rely on the generosity of our chairman Tony Bloom.
“In addition to Tony’s interest-free funding to build the American Express Community Stadium and American Express Elite Football Performance Centre, he continues to cover the club’s on-going losses and is committed to funding future losses.
“Once again, on behalf of all fans, the board would like to place on record its sincere thanks to Tony for his incredibly generous personal support that continues to take the club forward.”
The club has made the full accounts available to supporters on its official website, www.seagulls.co.uk.