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Members invited to question SUFC board

The Iron Trust is reminding members they have until 5pm on Monday December 3 to submit questions for Scunthorpe United’s AGM, which is at Glanford Park on Monday December 10.

The Trust needs this time to present the questions to the club before the meeting, and to give the club’s board of directors time to research any answers if they need to.

Trust members are invited to email us at theirontrust@gmail.com with questions, which we will collate and put to the club.

We appreciate many members are unsure on the state of the club’s finances, with often contrasting statements from club officials ranging from a threat of administration to assurances the club is on a sound financial footing. Below we have put together a brief q&a based on the published accounts for 2011/12 to help inform members.

How much did SUFC lose last year?
For the financial year ended June 30 2012, Scunthorpe United Football Club recorded an operating loss of £1,956,818. This is in comparison to a profit of £1.4million for the previous year, and loss of £480K (year end 2010), loss of £1m (year end 2009) and profit of £2.1m (year end 2008)

What were the reasons for the loss?
The club’s revenue dropped substantially following relegation from the Championship to League One, with turnover dropping from £7,789,231 to £3,289,377. The biggest drop in income was from Football League central funds, which fell from £4,660,966 to £1,192,704. The drop in income was greater than the reduction in outgoings, hence the record loss.

Was revenue down across the board?
Not quite everywhere. The restaurant, for instance, remains a real success story with income up to £277,911 from £240,081. Donations and miscellaneous income were marginally up, but those were the only three revenue areas that were up. Shop income fell from £67,961 to £43,653, broadcasting/internet brought in £203,406 rather than £363,37o the previous year and match day catering revenue was down almost half to £90,550 from £150,796. Transfer fees received were £145,000, rather than £1,685,837.
Overall attendance was down to 99,905 from 132,281, with the average attendance down to 3,409 from 4,190.

Where have there been cuts?
The biggest reduction is in staff costs, which (including social security costs) fell from £5,519,783 to £3,772,826. The number of football staff employed at the club remained at 47, but there was a non-football staff reduction of 22. Four  administrative staff left, as did two ground staff, four people from the restaurant and one from the commercial team. The number of matchday casuals was reduced from 132 to 117.  The school of excellence did increase its staff by four.

What did the chairman say about plans for the future of the club?
Mr Wharton predicted another substantial loss for this season, and has put £2million into the club through a loan to cover this deficit. He said he has made no progress in finding a successor, but said regardless of his success in finding new investment he will resign as chairman and a director at the end of June.

How much debt is SUFC in?
£548,928 loans are falling this season, with a further £400,000 falling between two and five years. This is in addition to the £2m the chairman has loaned the club.