June 8, 1944
Everton football Club report a loss of £2,466 on last season’s working. This news will come as a surprise to many who anticipated that the Blues would be well in front after another successful season. As a matter of fact plan figures do not reveal the true position, and but for the generosity of the directors the club would have made £2,777.
This generosity took the form of the payment to players on benefits up to the outbreak of war. Those benefits swallowed up £5,243, so you see, without that item the club would be well in front. As a matter of fact, the balance sheet has a really healthy appearance despite the loss after a profit the previous season of £1,378.
The loss, naturally increase the overdraft to £24,678 but the assets of land and property are up, and after allowing for depreciation, they stand at only £27,600 in the balance sheet. When one comes to realise that the new Gwlady’s-streets stand – alone cost £40,000 to erect in 1938-39 it will be appreciated what a good financial position it is. Everton have never yet had the full benefit of the new stand either.
Biggest War Gates.
The most gratifying feature is the tremendous increase in gate receipts, which were Everton’s highest for any war season. Look at the comparably figures and note the steady climb emphasising that attractive football such as that served up by the Blues is just what the public desires. In 1940 the gates receipts were £9,099, but they dropped the next year to £3,677. In 1942 they rose to £11,580, and then to £12,950 in 1943.
But… last season the receipts reached the splendid figure of £21,845 – an increase of £18,168 on that zero 1941 season. The very fact that the receipts last year were an advance of £8,895 on 1943 shows that the public is in need of good football as a relaxation medium.
Naturally, with gates up there is also a big increase in entertainment tax, which rose last year from £3,978 to £7,951. Everton paid £6,514 to visiting clubs, but received back £5,088. Gate expenses were up – another result of bigger gates –and there was a slight increase in wages. Sub-lets were down.
There will be no recommendation for the payment of a dividend at the annual meetings scheduled for June 16, but in my opinion the reason is not far to seek. Last year the club paid dividends for three seasons, which was the limit allowed by the F.A. Those payments covered the shareholders up to 1942. No actual dividend was paid for 1943, and it may be the idea of the directors – and this is purely assumption on my part – that they intend waiting until 1945, and then giving the shareholders another nice three-year dividend.
It’s an idea, anyhow. Such a procedure would save a tremendous amount of work for the officials in sending out dividend warrants. The three years dividend agreed last year only took £219 on a paid up capital of £1,657, and there is still £253 of unclaimed dividends, so I do not think anyone will grumble about no “divide.”
No doubt the club would be delighted if shareholders would put in their claims for their unclaimed dividends so that they could be wiped off the books. Last season loss means that the Blues have now an adverse balance on the last four season’s working of £1,772, but those faithful servants of the club have been well-rewarded.
There should be few queries at next week’s meeting when Messrs Will Gibbins (chairman), George Evans and W.R. Williams will, as I said some days ago, be re-elected unopposed to the directorate for a further period of three years.
(Evening Express: June 8, 1944)