As expected, costs increased after promotion from League Two, with Ian Evatt bolstering a squad that finished ninth on their return to the third tier.
But signs that the whole business – including the Whites Hotel – has bounced back from the pandemic are clear to see, with encouraging numbers posted in the latest accounts.
Football turnover increased by more than 62 per cent on the previous Covid-affected season, rising to just over £8.5m.
But turnover for the whole group – which includes the Whites Hotel – more than doubled, rising to just over £13.8m. That figure is also nearly 50 per cent higher than it was in 2020.
Operating losses for the football club were £5.77m but offset slightly across the whole group at nearly £3.7m.
Wanderers have more than £1.5m cash in the bank and the accounts note that more than £12.5m of shareholder and other loans have now been converted into equity, which has released considerable pressure finances going forward.
The conversion of loans has also had a positive impact on the amount of interest paid by the club – more than £600,000 written off the book – and the lack of bank debt has also painted a prettier picture than in years gone by.
Total wages across the group increased by just over 46 per cent after promotion from League Two to £9.146m, with the football department, comprising of 52 players, 120 management and administrative staff and 134 matchday staff, accounting for just over £8m, a jump of just over 44 per cent. That includes the outlay on more than a dozen new players and staff for the B Team, launched last summer.
As expected, there were big jumps in the money made from commercial, retail and hospitality as fans and businesses returned to the University of Bolton Stadium through 2021/22.
Car parking charges at the stadium last season raised £202,885 – a figure which does not reflect the alterations made at the start of the current campaign when the club moved to an automated number plate recognition system.
Streaming also made £393,000 despite fans returning to stadia, with the previous year in lockdown having raised £863,000.
As part of the agreement signed when they bought the club, Football Ventures paid out £2.75m to the Eddie Davies Trust Fund, and another £250,000 after promotion to League One. The accounts note that the Trust also wrote off the remaining £2.75m.
A long-standing secured loan of £2,500,000 was also settled in October with former vice-chairman Brett Warburton, which involved an exchange of land at Academy Way in Lostock.
Wanderers paid a total of £1.128m in player and agent fees, up from £175,000 in 2021. That included the cash transfer fees of Dion Charles, Kyle Dempsey, Jon Dadi Bodvarsson, Aaron Morley and Kieran Sadlier plus a loan sum for James Trafford and Xavier Amaechi.
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