Staggering interims, commercials, costs, little trading


To properly analyse Celtic’s interim account for the six months to 31 December 2017, which were published yesterday, we need to take into account the same period for the last two seasons.

Revenue for the period was a staggering £71.5m, up £10m on the previous season (which also saw Champions League group stage qualification), but more notably, a remarkable £40m from the £31.4m recorded during the last Ronny Deila season.

Clearly not all of that £40 is directly attributable to Champions League qualification, but one division of a football club drives revenue to another. For example, merchandising revenue for the period to 31 December 2015 was £7.5m, this increased to £10.7m this season. On-field success drives footfall, which drives revenue across the business.

The attributable effect of the Champions League is contained within Multimedia and Commercial income, which to Dec 17 period was £34.0m, up marginally from £29.9m the previous season, but unrecognisable from the £9.1m to Dec 15.

Also within Multimedia and Commercial are the contracts with Dafabet, Magners, New Balance, Eden Mill and Intelligent Car Leasing. It beggars belief that some of the current deals were achieved in the months before Ronny departed. The multi-year Dafabet deal is comparable to a single-year Champions League qualification.

Although Champions League football remains of the utmost importance, these commercial partnerships fortified the club’s ability to speculate as they have since 2016. Don’t underestimate their importance.

I’ll come to how spectacularly successful a period this was in a moment, but the one area Peter Lawwell will be anxious about is the cost of football and stadium operations – which are primarily wages. Costs for the period to Dec 17 were £40.7m, up from £33.7 the previous season and £24.2m under Ronny.

In the space of two years we have come close to doubling our football costs. The revenue is there to support this growth, and the overall strength of the finances can withstand a season without Champions League football, but you and I know what happens to clubs who budget assuming they will always hit the Champions League jackpot (they sell to a spiv for £1 and liquidate).

It will also occur to you that it doesn’t feel like you are watching a more expensive football team this season than last. Put another way, we got better value for money last season than this. The primary reason for this is wage inflation in England, which forces a corresponding increase when contracts are being renewed elsewhere.

Most of the Celtic first team could earn more money in England. They stay at Celtic because they want to be here, but also because the differential is palatable. For some, the money available elsewhere will be irresistible (which doesn’t make them bad people, btw).

For a club who again retained all of their top personnel, this is an incredible set of accounts. I expect more player trading in the summer, as Brendan will try to build upon the team which has largely carried him through two season.  Congratulations to the supporters, Peter Lawwell and his team, and to Brendan, his staff and players. As a club, we are probably more united than at any point post-Larsson – a period which had its own fragility.

I know Celtic continually risk-assess the future, but the level of professionalism throughout the club gives me confidence in the future. If I can attempt an understatement, things are going to be OK*.

*this does not indicate complacency about Partick Thistle tomorrow.

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  1. GlassTwoThirdsFull on

    So, Lord Waltosh doesn’t want the job? Whoddathunkit!


    But, now that it has been “established” as “fact” by “everyone” that he was just the man for the job, who could we possibly get who would be the closest thing?


    Oh, look – isn’t Alex McLeish available!



  2. Paul67



    Staggering new word of the day



    69 game unbeaten British slump



    beat our own British record



    best fans in the world award



    league points record



    league wins record



    league goals record



    unbeaten season



    4 trophies in a row



    6 league titles in a row



    103 trophies



    67 anniversary



    CL group stages qualification 2 years in a row



    7 consecutive wins against our main rival





  3. Great financial results, well done to all who contributed.



    The green pound is unstoppable if we are all together.



    This green pound can and should be used against the cheats at the SFA.

  4. Thanks guys for your feedback and comments yesterday . Ruaridh has heard that some people are being transferred to other ‘projects’ so is hopeful that his trip might be re-arranged .



    If not , then it’s all guns blazing.



    PS. SB available for cup game tomorrow – work commitments mean I can’t make it . 405 (NSU) . first come , first served .







  5. Paul 67


    Will the Hotel be a good investement for the club in terms of generating cash to improve the team?

  6. PAUL67



    Great article but I’m not sure what NEGANON2 will make of it.



    So, keep yer heid doon mate!




  7. Don’t know a thing about balance sheets , finance , I do know to keep hold of that dripping roast ,we have to keep being top dog up here , failure on that score , let’s sevco back in . Peter . Brendan . You know what you’ve gotta do .

  8. No more derogatory comments about our captain and club today from that knobend levein?


    Maybe too early or him and that boot budge haven’t thought of something yet!








    Your question is perfectly valid,mate. Similar,as I said,to the points raised on E-Tims.



    Are Celtic committed to putting the best team possible on the pitch? Or are they a money-raising enterprise?



    Are they scared to spend,or just ideologically opposed to it?



    I remember Alex Ferguson getting hard questions from the press for spending a ridiculous £7m on Andy Cole. His reply?



    We’d only have to pay it in tax. Use it or lose it.






    Here’s a question for all our happyclapping fans of the glorious balance sheet.



    How much money has the company lost to Hector due to a failure to invest earnings in improving the playing staff,and BACKING our manager-and our fans,btw.

  10. Money –



    Oot n aboot in Sciacca last night . Went for an espresso in a bar . Punters were watching trailers on Netflix re 4 soon come Netflix fly on the wall documentaries re daily life at Rubentus . There will be a total of 4 x 60 minute documentaries . . Rubentus have yet to reveal how much cash they got from Netflix.

  11. DESSYBHOY on 9TH FEBRUARY 2018 11:43 AM


    Go Tell The Spartim


    My question was a genuine question about the strategy of spending money on a Hotel when I feel the priority should be the team and facilities for supporters, maybe the board have crunched the numbers and this will be a good earner which hopefully will find its way to the team rather than another strand of the plc.





    The plc will spend just enough money on the team to ensure that we comfortably remain the number one team domestically which then gives us a crack at qualifying for the CL group stage. I suspect that is the full extent of our ambition no matter what they tell supporters.



    It is therefore feasible that (assuming we reach the CL groups), we could amass a healthy profit every season as we don’t have to spend that much (relative to the domestic competition) to win the SPFL title. If we don’t qualify for the CL group stages then the club will sell one of its assets to compensate for the loss of this income stream.



    There is no doubt the hotel and museum project is all about generating further incoming for the plc and its shareholders. I am not criticising them for doing that as that’s what plc’s are supposed to do.



    As a shareholder, I am quite happy to receive my extra shares each season on the back of healthy profits. That’s probably the only thing I have in common with the club’s major shareholder.

  12. VFR800 is now a Monster 821 on

    So an extra £25M has gone on the footballing operation in the past 2 seasons (an extra £9.5M last season and another £15.5M this season) if we take £24.2M as the benchmark since Brendan Rodgers has come in.



    The money is going on the football side then; maybe not all of it, but a sizeable chunk of it. £74.4M to be precise.



    I’m no account (nor is Arnold my cousin/brother in law etc.) but it seems to me that with this level of expenditure we need some collateral in the bank if we want to increase the spending on the footballing operations over the next few seasons.



    A wee bit of prudence as we build for the future will save us from becoming the busted flush that Rangers (in liquidation) became.





  13. BMCUW



    Thanks, Paul has indicated costs of wages have spiralled,not a great surprise when you see what happens in other leagues who get free money from TV unlike ourselves who have to earn it and at cost,I hope whoever is negotiating the TV deal is prepared to chase the TV companies if they continue to offer a pittance for coverage. No deal is better than a bad deal and that does not have any political significance.

  14. All that money and yet the Celtic Board still can’t find it in themselves to challenge or contradict the same club narrative.



    Never mind, there’s hints that they might possibly have some sympathy with those calling for a review of historic malpractice by the SFA.



    Whoopee Do.


    I’ve mentioned on here recently the much-anticipated HOOTENANNY in Derry.



    Derry isn’t,say,Belfast,London,Dublin,Lisbon. That is to say…



    Not a lot of hotel availability.



    I have looked at the three weekends in June during The World Cup,and only about 40% of the hotels even have any available rooms.



    Obviously the next two months are not a possibility due to being a certain season.



    This is a bucket list thing,I reckon,for a few of us. Certainly,for me. A visit to The Museum of Free Derry,a few moments quiet contemplation in certain places.



    Does anyone have any ideas how to do this in June,bearing in mind the above,or should we look at a date in,say,October?



    Btw,I’m more than happy to go in June anyway. Some of the accommodation might be kinda dodgy,some might be more than I would normally pay.



    So what?



    Either or,suits me.



    But a Hoot needs the Hootenanniers.



    Open to suggestions,TM Actress-Bishop Productions.

  16. BMCUWP….



    I am by no means qualified to answer your queries about Celtic and Hector but…



    ….as far as I remember there have been posts in the past challenging the opposite proposition of SPENDING money on player purchases to avoid paying Hector!



    It’s a funny old complex world. No wonder I’m confused lol




  17. About this time Neganon 2 usually logs in to deconstruct the good news story. I’m curious to read his take on it. I think it’s great that we are in such a good place financially while still competing for the Treble and still in Europe in February.



    Hail! Hail!

  18. The hands cant hit what the eyes cant see on

    “but you and I know what happens to clubs who budget assuming they will always hit the Champions League jackpot (they sell to a spiv for £1 and liquidate).”



    The problem with this statement is that it is not Celtic’s failure to budget on the Champions League that is the issue, it is once Celtic have reached the group stages there is no appreciable increase in outlay in the transfer market.



    Put another way, our spending seems immune to any increase regardless of Champions League spending; whereas failure to qualify for the Champions League causes a corresponding decrease in spending (net profit through player sale). This seems to me a limiting factor- how can Celtic expect to grow when they do not proportionately raise their spending in the transfer market in line with their income?

  19. glendalystonsils on

    PHILBHOY on 9TH FEBRUARY 2018 12:10 PM






    Does that mean you’ve




  20. Whatever your opinion as to what we do with the money and how we do it, you can’t argue that these are very solid financials.



    Indeed, it’s wonderful to see the Daily Record recognising what is a major Scottish business success story – a Scottish business operating and succeeding in a global industry, no less – by publishing such a positive review of the accounts, fulsome in praise of the on-field and off-field performance of the club.



    What’s that, Skippy? No such report in the Daily Record?

  21. Looking for a lift up and back to Paradise Tomorrow from Gretna if any Cqnrs are travelling by car or Supporter’s bus, two minutes off J45 M6 will of course contribute to fuel Costs




    This is an excellent point and I agree that extra revenue should equal extra spending on the team. The issue is that the figures we are talking about realistically equate to 1 Player (Transfer Fee, wages, signing on fee, agent fee’s, image rights etc etc)

  23. GlassTwoThirdsFull on

    “you and I know what happens to clubs who budget assuming they will always hit the Champions League jackpot (they sell to a spiv for £1 and liquidate).”




    Did Leeds actually liquidate? :-)

  24. glendalystonsils on

    SOUTH OF TUNIS on 9TH FEBRUARY 2018 12:22 PM



    Hmmmmm .As soon as Dodgy Dave hears about that , he’ll be right on the blower to Netflix.



    Look out for a new documentary series on Sevco titled ‘Glib and Shameless.’





    Well,I’m no accountant. Which makes me ideally qualified to be a chief executive of a company.



    Put money men in charge of a company,watch them worship money,with no regard to any other part of the company,be it R&D or ethos,or whatever.



    These things are not financially-positive.



    According to the money men. Who only see today,not yesterday,tomorrow,and next week is another century.



    I remember being told that by my flatmate 25 years ago. Give or take a word or two.



    He was a Senior Auditor at BDO Binder Hamlin in Old Bailey office. Knew what he was talking about,I think.

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