AC Milan and Inter are two clubs with very different financial situations, and the red half of the city took a further step forward in 2022-23.
La Gazzetta dello Sport (seen below) recalls how it was back on 31 December 2006 that Silvio Berlusconi’s Milan – semi-finalists in the Champions League – closed the accounts with a profit of €2.48m and a turnover of €293m, a record at the time.
On June 30, RedBird’s Milan – a semi-finalist in the Champions League and with the Scudetto on their chest – closed the accounts with a profit of €6m and a turnover of over €400m, a potential record in the history of the club’s revenues.
After almost 17 years of losses in the balance sheet, Milan has returned to putting a plus sign on the accounts and the beauty of this story is that Gerry Cardinale is shaping the club on the principles of sustainability while Pioli and his team are chasing the title again.
One year after buying the club from Elliott Management for €1.2bn, RedBird are enjoying a historic result: the virtuous process started by Elliott has culminated in a financial year that will mark record revenues.
It is a leap forward that is sensational not only when compared with the accounts of the last 17 years, but also in relation to the more recent past: the 2021-22 budget showed a deficit of €66.5m and revenues stood at €297m.
Once again, economic and sporting results go hand in hand: commercial and sponsorship revenues grew by €44m compared to the title year, while the Champions League campaign brought in over €80m.
The path continues, as seen by the summer mercato financed largely by player trading and the sale of Sandro Tonali to Newcastle United, all while the Rossoneri’s salary is lower than that of Juventus, Inter and Roma.
RedBird are not stopping, because in recent days the project for a new stadium has begun to take shape, with the presentation to the Council of San Donato Milanese of the urban planning variant proposal for the San Francesco area.
Milan will build a new home with 70,000 seats, and will also be able to host concerts, events and other sporting events. As befits a true elite European club.
Inter meanwhile are treading carefully, knowing their accounts cannot always rely on the Champions League final. Sales made last summer which yielded around €70m in capital gains and will end up in the 2024 result.
So the future, in terms of the budget, is not a concern. It is the heart of the Inter moment, whose Board of Directors has just approved the numbers for 2022-23, with a deficit of €85m, a clear improvement compared to the -€140m from the previous season, and a turnover of €425m.
The €85m losses are the result above all of the extraordinary progress in Europe, with the final reached in Istanbul, the €90m collected by UEFA from TV rights alone, a total that well exceeds €100m if we consider ticket sales.
For the 2024 budget, Inter have already moved forward with the aforementioned transfers. With Oaktree the model can only be this: sustainability and self-financing, either due to Suning’s difficulties or due to the UEFA parameters to be respected.
Inter are hanging on the continuity of qualification for the Champions League (last season at a certain point fourth place was in the balance) and on the ability of its managers to maintain high competitiveness with player trading, therefore the buying and selling of players.
All this is in the season in which the Oaktree loan expires, set for May 2024, which is added to the €415m bond expiring in 2027. The interest expense weighs on the club for around €40m per year and certainly affects the liabilities.
What will happen in May? The US fund’s pledge on the club is known. As well as the president’s objective of refinancing the debt, a scenario that would not change the general picture: sales, tickets, European path: Inter are in a constant search for balance.
Balance is also achieved by reducing the costs of the squad: those of the first team decreased by 12%, excluding the coach, they went from €132m to €116m gross.
If the Scudetto arrives at the end of the season, it will mean that the work done by the Nerazzurri directors was excellent from every point of view.