No fans in Westfalenstadion pushes Dortmund to €72m loss

August 10 – German giants Borussia Dortmund have reported a loss of €72.8 million for the 2021/21 financial year, up from the €44 million loss reported in the previous year.

The club blamed the increase in losses on restriction on matchday, conference and catering income imposed by covid, as well as reporting a drop in transfer earnings.

The sale of Jadon Sancho to Manchester United this summer will boost Dortmund’s finances, but not in the current figures. Dortmund reported his sale price as €85 million of which about €56 million will benefit the club in the 2021/22 financial year.

The biggest hit on Borussia’s revenues was from ticket sales, which dropped from €32.5 million in the previous season to just €0.6 million.

Dortmund’s Westfalenstadion has an 80,000 capacity. Club CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke, has called on politicians to open stadiums beyond the proposed limits of up to 25,000 fans, which he says would still see the cub losing €2 million per home match.

“Now is the time to make courageous decisions and you can’t solve everything by closing the store. At some point, it must continue. I expect decisions that give us prospects in the medium term,” said Watzke.

Watzke says that vaccinations are the route to full stadia and that BVB will only admit fans with proof of vaccination to the Westfalenstadion this season. “We have a vaccination status that is not satisfactory, but we have a completely different situation than last year,” he said. “Vaccination is the key to escaping the pandemic.”

What he can’t escape is a revenue drop of to €334.2 million from €370 million. While matchday revenue was down there was a small increase in broadcast revenue to €186.7 million (from €169.8 million) and in advertising, up to €106.6 million from €98.0 million. Merchandising remained level at €32.6 million compared to €33.3 million for the previous year

Personnel expenses increased by €500,000 to €215.7 million. Operating expenses were down €33.2 million year on year from €119.0 million to €85.8 million.

Dortmund is the only publicly quoted club in Germany. No dividend will be paid to shareholders.

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