Chelsea emerged the 7th richest club in the world when the 18th edition of the Deloitte Football Money League report was released early this year. Chelsea recorded a jump of 25 per cent in revenues to £324.4 million in 2013-14 from the figure of £260 million posted in the previous financial.
Match day revenues clocked £71m making the club the sixth highest in terms of collection under this category. Owing to size constraints the Stamford Bridge arena manages to hold not more than 42,000 people at full capacity and ranks 17th size-wise among the stadiums of Money League’s top 20 clubs. Attendance at Stamford Bridge being packed to capacity for most matches, there is not much scope for growth under this account head unless the club decides to raise prices of tickets substantially.
Lucrative TV deals helped broadcast revenues gallop 33 per cent to £139.9m from £105.4m posted last financial year and with the new deal announced by Sky of £5.5 billion over the next few years this will only rise. A modest rise in UEFA distributions could be attributed to the club’s entry into the semi-finals of the championship last season. But earnings on this category could improve in the coming year keeping in light Chelsea’s splendid showing in the Champions League so far and the prospect of a progression beyond the Round of 16.
Commercial revenues in the 2013-14 season jumped a healthy 35 per cent to £113.5m. This was mainly driven by a 10-year kit deal struck with Adidas. An increase in the value of the shirt deal with Samsung and the addition of a host of commercial partners also helped. The expiry of the shirt deal with Samsung saw the entry of Yokohama Rubber as a profitable replacement. The deal worth £200m spread over a period of 5 years will alone probably help it get past 6th placed Manchester City in the Money League standings next year. The Yokohama deal is double of the £18m Samsung had paid annually for the previous shirt deal.
Leading the Premier League over Man City by a comfortable margin on the points table at the present, the Capital One Cup in the bag and could make an upward shift in rankings in the Deloitte’s list a real possibility. Among the traditional powerhouses of Europe, Chelsea’s fan base has grown the fastest, especially in the vastly potential Asian market. This has made it a magnet for huge sponsors, one example of which is Japanese tire-maker Yokohama.
The revenue gap with Manchester City is £22m, which Chelsea expects to bridge this coming season.