LONDON — Manchester United today projected record annual revenue of up to £640 million (RM3.8 billion) in its financial year to the end of June even as a distracting takeover saga rumbles on.
United’s owners, the Glazer family, are weighing up offers for the club from Qatari banker Sheikh Jassim Bin Hamad Al Thani and British billionaire Jim Ratcliffe, the founder of chemicals firm Ineos.
The Glazers first indicated they could sell by initiating a strategic review in November but the bidding process has dragged on.
Reports have suggested Sheikh Jassim’s bid, which is for 100 per cent of the club, is now the most likely to be accepted. Sources close to the Qatari bid have indicated their eagerness to close the deal, with the summer transfer window now open.
Supporters staged fresh protests against the Glazers at Old Trafford today as the club launched its kit for next season.
Revenue guidance for the current financial year was raised to a figure of between £630 million and £640 million in the third-quarter financial results for the period ending March 31, 2023, which were released today.
The club posted record revenues of £627 million in 2018/19.
The current figures are driven by record match attendance and matchday revenues. Ticket sales for the 2022/23 season surpassed the previous record set in 2016/17, with 2.4 million sold.
Global memberships also hit 360,000, which United said was the largest paid membership programme in world sport.
Revenue for the third quarter was up 11 per cent on the same period last year.
Broadcasting revenue was slightly down on the corresponding period due to the club being in the Europa League rather than the Champions League, but was partially offset by the club’s performance in domestic cup competitions.
Recruitment during the transfer window will not be affected by the results, according to sources close to the club, with enough cash available to enable United boss Erik ten Hag to invest in the team.
The limiting factor is understood to be the requirement to stay within financial sustainability rules. — AFP