THE future is looking bright for Wrexham FC after club officials annoucned they were £450,000 better off than expected.
That was the message from the football club’s directors at a landmark meeting – the club’s first AGM in a decade – at Glyndwr University last night.
Peter Jones, chairman of Wrexham Supporters Trust, called the meeting an “historic moment” and said the lack of an AGM in the last 10 years was a “sad reflection of what we’ve been through”.
The club was originally forecast to lose more than £700,000 during the last season, July 2011 to June 2012, but that figure shrank to a loss of just £245,841 by the end of the financial period.
Financial director Mark Williams explained the detail in the club’s bank balance was revealed due to a desire “to be open and transparent” in respect of all the stakeholders and fans.
He said: “The figures are a lot better than we were expecting. When we took over we were budgeting for a loss of over £700,000 so to turn that into (about) £200,000 is a lot better than where we expected to be.”
The figure was brought down by the club’s FA Cup run last season and the sale of players such as Curtis Obeng to Swansea during the previous January transfer window.
Wrexham FC’s aim in coming years is to run at a profit, although the club have budgeted for a £200,000 loss in the current season to give Reds’ manager Andy Morrell the best possible playing budget.
Mr Williams added the club had already paid off the majority of the liabilities incurred from taking over the club.
Wrexham Supporters Trust (WST) bought WFC for £1 in November 2011 but took on liabilities of £442,000 from the old company owned by Geoff Moss and Ian Roberts which included paying back a loan of £129,986 from Mr Roberts’ construction firm Roberts Homes Ltd to the old company.
The trust pumped in £270,000 in share capital after taking over the club and the turnover for the year July 8, 2011 to June 30, 2012 was £1.4 million.
They also put in £99,972 during takeover talks to cover running costs including players’ wages.
These figures were not disclosed in the financial report so as not to compromise the club’s competitive position.
The report did reveal the annual cost of hiring the Racecourse and training ground Colliers Park from Glyndwr University was £119,583 but that was offset by payments received from Glyndwr becoming the main club sponsor.
However, questions were raised over the viability of the club’s centre for excellence.
While the youth setup made £52,181 in turnover, costs ran at £65,411 leaving a loss of more than £13,000.
But this amount did not take into account the sale of teenage goalkeeper Danny Ward to Liverpool for a fee thought to be in the region of £100,000.
Mr Williams added: “We have to look at the whole business, so we’ll work with members to see what’s best for Wrexham FC.”