Trend is positive
The annual accounts of Hereford United have just been released to the public and although they show a loss of £21,670 in the year to May 31st 2002, compared with a loss of £108,913 in the year to May 2001, the trend is positive and suggests that the year just ended could show a profit of perhaps £50,000.
The loss could have been nullified if 'other operating income' had been as high as in the previous year.
Other operating income comprises donations received and rental franchise income and was down by £33,009. This is a worrying drop and not fully explained in the accounts.
In 2002 nothing was received from what is described as the 'Development Association'. The VP (Vice-Presidents) Club also failed to match its help in 2001 by over £3,000 and sundry income was down by £23,000. It is not known what sundry income comprises.
The income received from franchises which we take to mean Legends and snack bars was also down by £2,500. However with greater attendances last season it is thought that this income could increase in the near future.
Several other factors have contributed to the loss. As HU-FC.co.uk reported last month the directors have received higher payments. In the previous year they only allowed themselves £49,783, but this year their emoluments came to £110,333. It is well known that they struggled to find enough money to pay themselves in 2000/2001, so the increase can be partly put down to catching up.
Costs were kept well in check with the cost of sales down by £8,153 and administrative expenses down by £35,519.
The payment to Formsole for the lease of the land and the buildings, normally £9700, has been waived. HU-FC.co.uk reported on this subject last April.
Staff costs which includes directors pay have increased by £19,153. As the average number cost of players on the books dropped from 24 to 19 and the money to pay them dropped by about £42,000, their wages may have been a little higher than in 2000/2001.
Income included £27,500 for transfer fees. This would refer to Gavin Williams moving to Yeovil.
Overall the accounts are satisfactory in most respects and the directors should be thanked for keeping the club's finances in check. How many other football clubs in the Conference and in leagues above have recorded a small loss or even a profit recently?