Blackpool FC 'on track' to post more positive financial accounts next year

Chief executive Ben Mansford hopes Blackpool are “on track” to post more positive financial accounts next year.

Wednesday, 9th March 2022, 8:00 am

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It comes after the Seasiders recorded losses of £4.8m for the year leading up to June 30, 2021, the period that covers the club’s promotion from League One.

However, that season was largely played in front of empty stadiums due to the pandemic, which was cited as the main reason behind the club’s losses rising from £2.2m the previous year.

Looking ahead to next year, Mansford believes the picture should begin to look a little rosier.

“Simon Sadler is the custodian of the club, he feels he needs to be responsible,” he told The Gazette.

“We’ve seen this year the tragedy of mismanagement of clubs in the Championship and what that affect might ultimately have on the communities and those supporters.

“We want to try and be sustainable, we want to try and grow.

Blackpool chief executive Ben Mansford

“Simon has invested to kickstart things under his custodianship but he’s also trying to right some of the wrongs from the past in terms of infrastructure at the stadium and the provision of a meaningful and proper training ground.

“Massive credit to him for all he’s done and all he’s going to continue to do.

“What does it mean for the accounts next year? Hopefully there will be a better, more positive picture to report after a year back in the Championship rather than a year played behind closed doors.

“We’re on track to be able to show that.”

The club still recouped £771,000 from season ticket sales last season, with a large number of supporters opting not to claim a refund to help assist the club. This figure stood at £1m for the previous year.

Bar and food sales predictably plummeted to just £2,000 from £328,000, while gate receipts dropped from £1.1m to £73,000. But merchandise was up from £383,000 to £561,000.

One major positive for the club was the income it brought in from match streaming, as fans were able to watch all of their games via the iFollow platform. This rose from £45,000 to £579,000.

“We’re one of the first League One clubs to put their accounts out there because we have to tie in with some of the Financial Fair Play rules in the Championship,” Mansford added.

“The fact a lot of revenues have held or grown, like the retail revenues, the sponsorship and hospitality, the streaming platform, it all shows the supporters got behind the club when they knew we needed it.

“Simon was grateful and embraced that support and that gave him the confidence to invest when a lot of other league clubs weren’t.

“That gave us a squad that united the town and motivated the fanbase and ultimately put a smile on all the supporters.

“These supporters deserve that more than anyone given the huge challenges they’ve been through.

“The accounts are a fair reflection of all those factors, namely the wonderful support from the fans, the great vision of the owner to invest and the hard work from Critch, the players and staff to come through a really challenging period where people have lost jobs and lost loved ones.”