FOOTBALL - Coventry City owner King declares 'new era just beginning' after latest accounts published - The Coventry Observer

FOOTBALL - Coventry City owner King declares 'new era just beginning' after latest accounts published

Coventry Editorial 1st Mar, 2024 Updated: 1st Mar, 2024   0

DOUG King has declared a new era at Coventry City is ‘just beginning’ after the club published its latest set of accounts.

King completed a full takeover of the Sky Blues in January with the accounts drawing a line under Sisu’s ownership.

The period of the accounts includes last season’s Championship play-off final appearance and the first few months of King’s ownership.

King said: “We are pleased to share the Accounts for the year end 31st May 2023.

“These accounts are the final accounts of the previous owners of the Club, but the actions since the January 2023 takeover demonstrate that a new era of this great Club is just beginning.

“Our goal is to reach the Premier League in a sustainable way, improving the operating performance of the Club each year.

“We will also upgrade our facilities that have been neglected for too long and must reflect our new ambitions.”

Coventry published the following on their club website: At the point of acquisition of 100% of the Club in late January 2023, outstanding club debt was converted into equity leaving the Club debt free at that point.  This restructure ensured that the Club avoided incurring significant interest and management charges as Doug King confirmed that future funding would be free of interest. This move significantly improves the long term financial strength and sustainability of the Club.

The Club also reverted back to its historical name of Coventry City Football Club Limited.

The Club’s overall loss after tax decreased to £4.715m in 22/23, down from £6.712m in 21/22.

The Sky Blues’ turnover increased by £2.282m to £20.369m – this was mainly due to the Club reaching the Play-Offs and Play-Off Final combined with the decision to bring the retail operation in-house.

Administrative expenses increased from £20.542m in 2022 to £23.602m in 2023 – the majority of this increase being due to increased player wages, alongside a £318k asset write off related to the replacement of one of the training pitches at Ryton.

The profit on the sale of player registrations increased from £494k to £2.368m in 22/23, this being largely due to the sale of Dom Hyam to Blackburn Rovers in August 2022.

During the accounting period, a new five-year licence agreement was signed by the Club to continue to play at its home the Coventry Building Society Arena. The Club also invested over £1m in a new pitch that was installed at the venue in the Summer of 2023.  This transformed the playing surface and put to rest any future pitch issues, ensuring that the suspended points deduction still hanging over the Club until the end of the 23/24 season (after the 2022 Commonwealth Games pitch debacle) would be avoided.

Significant Investment has also subsequently been made into the Club’s Ryton Training Ground, with two new 4G Desso pitches installed (mirroring the Coventry Building Society Arena) and an ongoing total revamp of the wider site’s infrastructure. This initial phase of upgrading the facility certainly helped to attract better quality players to the Club during the summer of 2023 and the next phase will focus upon a significant upgrade of the building itself in the coming years.

Additional investment has also been made to the Coventry Building Society Arena (including dressing rooms), to the Club’s new retail operations and to other areas to improve the matchday experience for fans.

There has also been further improvements made to the playing squad after this accounting period. External funding alongside transfer fees received for stand out players such as Viktor Gyokeres and Gustavo Hamer in the summer of 2023 have been invested to acquire many new high-quality players, significantly improving the depth of the squad, and allowing the club to rely far less on loan players than previously.

This sets the foundations for future success and to fulfil the Club’s intentions to reach the EFL play-offs at least three times in the next five years and ultimately to re-join the Premier League.

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