Of all the biggest of the big clubs, Bayern Munich is far and away the most fiscally responsible. That deliberate approach to the club’s finances has translated into sustained success in the sport and has positioned Bayern to compete with clubs reliant on very different financial structures, from billionaire sole proprietors to thinly veiled state sponsorship, even as transfer fees and player salaries have ballooned.
Bayern’s turnover and net profit from last season, 2018-2019, continue the trend. Bayern’s total turnover last season rose a whopping 14.1% from €657.4m in 2017-2018 to €750.4m. This is the first time that Bayern has cracked the €750m milestone — first reached by Real Madrid last season (€750.9m) as they won their third consecutive Champions League. Bayern did it their way.
Turnover, of course, is not the same as profit: but Bayern’s total profit after tax rose even more dramatically. The club earned €46.2m gross and €29.5m net in the 2017-2018 season. Last season, gross profit rose 63% to €75.3m and net profit rose 78% to a grand total of €52.5. Bayern’s equity capital now stands at €497.4m.
Bayern CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge said (FCBayern.com),
Of course we are extremely pleased with FC Bayern’s financial development. Both the turnover and the profit rose to new records. FC Bayern’s development is outstanding, both in a sporting and financial sense.
Rummenigge gave “special thanks” to all of Bayern’s staff “for their commitment that has led to this very gratifying result.” As a token of gratitude, Rummenigge stated that the board paid Bayern’s staff “two additional monthly salaries as a bonus”!
Bayern’s deputy chairman and chief financial officer Jan-Christian Dreesen emphasized the stability of Bayern’s finances and elaborated on the sources of the increases:
[In addition to] the increases in turnover and profit, the improvement of the equity capital is very positive. The ratio rose by 9.7 per cent to 68 per cent. That shows how healthy and sound FC Bayern is financially. All of the club’s departments have contributed to this very gratifying result. Income from matches and TV rights has risen, and we have achieved record numbers regarding sponsorship income. In terms of merchandising, we have stabilised FC Bayern’s turnover despite the decline throughout Europe.
The club’s financial performance thus allayed fears expressed by Rummenigge in April that Bayern’s disappointing Champions League exit in the round of 16 seriously harmed Bayern’s finances. Rummenigge said at the time,
I will put it this way: next year, we should not permit such an early [Champions League] exit as in this year. That was also a financial loss and did even bigger damage to our image — also the Bundesliga’s. That was a dent that happened. Next year, it must not happen again.
The club weathered that financial loss with aplomb. This season, it will strive to erase the dent in its image. Although the recently closed summer transfer window proved to be less lavish than anticipated, the financial groundwork has been laid to acquire major pieces for years ahead.