Pompey delight at finance figures under new ownership

Pompey chief executive Mark Catlin
Pompey chief executive Mark Catlin
Lee Bowyer.

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The city has rallied around Pompey to ensure financial expectations at the club have been exceeded under the new community ownership.

That’s the verdict of Blues chief executive Mark Catlin after revealing the club’s latest accounts to fans at the Pompey Supporters’ Trust AGM.

Monday night’s event saw more than 200 supporters pack Fratton Park’s Victory Bar for the first such meeting since the Trust took control at the end of April.

Figures presented by finance director Tony Brown showed a commercial income of £1,296,000 is forecast by June next year.

That is 58-per-cent more – £752,366 – on the budgeted £543,634 drawn up by the club.

In addition, the budgeted turnover of £4,054,479 is now forecast as £5,270,000, such have been the massive strides over the first five months of community ownership.

That has helped influence forecast first-year losses to presently be put at £713,955 – a difference of £251,279 to budgeted losses of £965,234.

And Catlin believes the accounts reflect not only the work of commercial team Micah Hall and Tracey Mitchell but also the manner in which the city has embraced the new regime.

He said: ‘The figures are great. It’s due to a lot of hard work from a lot of people at the club, mainly sponsorships and cutting costs.

‘Through Micah Hall, especially, we have gone out there and re-engaged with a lot of local businesses and it has made a hell of a lot of difference.

‘There are businesses I thought were going to cancel that didn’t and, instead, renewed – at figures they were paying in the Championship.

‘We have always budgeted to make a loss in the first few years.

‘But if you look at the figures, the first year is now looking that, if we have a little cup run or if a player is sold, then the losses are wiped out. That would be a massive achievement.

‘The budgeted figures are what was planned and we are excelling in almost every area.

‘I knew we had a lot of momentum when we took over but what has surprised me is just how much the fans have got behind everything we are trying to do.

‘There is still a lot of momentum and goodwill. We have got to try to keep that going as long as we possibly can.’

According to latest figures, the Trust owns 59.3 per cent of the club, worth £2,412,000 in shares.

The presidents account for the other 40.7 per cent (worth £1,655,000).

In total, that is £4,067,000 of total share capital in the club.

Meanwhile, the players’ payroll is 27 per cent of total income. The League Two salary cap is 55 per cent.

Catlin added: ‘The Trust are shareholders. Shareholders get reports and figures at every other business, so why not a football club?

‘As the majority shareholders, if they should ever want us to do quarterly reports then that is what we will have to do.

‘Every year we have to be correct and proper and be as transparent as possible.

‘The club and executive team must report to our shareholders, as you would in any other business.’