Hearts announce seven-figure profit thanks to Andy Irving and Uche Ikpeazu deals plus £4.5m benefactor cash

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Hearts’ turnover increased by 90 per cent in the last year, helping the club report a £1.7million profit in their annual accounts. Money from Andy Irving and Uche Ikpeazu transfers allied to nearly £4.5m from benefactors were also significant factors.

Director James Anderson and the club’s other benefactors contributed £4,460,000 to the Edinburgh club during the year to June 30, 2022. Foundation of Hearts donated £1,525,000 via cash pledges from supporters. With £461,000 generated from player deals relating to Irving and Ikpeazu, turnover at Tynecastle increased by £6.9m to £14.6m.

The club stated in their accounts that they are now operating at pre-Covid 19 levels of business with a £3m operational profit. Their costs also rose by 60 per cent as a result of increased activity within the club.

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The biggest income from players came via Ikpeazu, the English striker who joined Middlesbrough from Wycombe Wanderers in July 2021 for a reported £1m. The transfer which took him from Hearts to Wycombe the previous year included a sell-on clause believed to be 30 per cent. A fee was also agreed to let midfielder Irving join Türkgücü München in Germany last summer which earned Hearts a six-figure sum.

In a statement, Hearts said their accounts proved it was now “business as usual” after the first year of fan ownership through FoH. They will hold the club AGM on Thursday, December 15, at Tynecastle.

“Heart of Midlothian has returned to pre-pandemic levels of financial strength, posting an operational profit of £3million following the publication of the club’s 2021/22 accounts,” said a club spokesperson. “Despite the difficulties faced during a period when COVID-19 affected so many businesses, the club has grown in all aspects of its operation.

“In a historic year in which ownership of the club was transferred to the fans, the first team’s magnificent 21/22 campaign, which saw Robbie Neilson lead the Jambos to third place in the cinch Premiership, a Scottish Cup Final and guaranteed group stage European football, helped drive the club forward financially.

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“Record retail and hospitality sales, combined with significant gate receipt income and continued partnership and sponsorship support, ensured a significant £6.9m year-on-year increase in turnover, totalling £14.6m.

Hearts have released their annual accounts from Tynecastle.Hearts have released their annual accounts from Tynecastle.
Hearts have released their annual accounts from Tynecastle.

“Operating costs have increased 60 per cent year-on-year, reflecting our revenue growth, the impact of the recent cost of living increase and our commitment to continue to invest for the future.

“Boosted by players sales and ongoing benefactors’ support, profit before tax of £1.7m was reported for the financial year, proving that is very much ‘business as usual’ at Tynecastle Park.”

The latest accounts do not include income from this season’s involvement in the Europa Conference League group phase, from which Hearts hope to earn between £2.5m and £3m. They also hope to finish third in the Premiership and qualify for group-stage football in Europe again next season.

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Chief executive Andrew McKinlay told the Evening News earlier this month that he anticipates a healthy profit. “As we continue to evaluate all of the income and costs associated with the Europa Conference League campaign, and prepare for next month’s AGM, we are not yet at the stage where we can definitively comment on any profit made,” he said. “We can, however, assure our supporters that, thanks to both our forward planning and the first team’s two group-stage victories, we will post a profit that is into seven figures.”