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Page last updated at 16:37 GMT, Wednesday, 22 September 2010 17:37 UK

Rangers move into profit and reduce debt

Rangers manager Walter Smith with chief executive Martin Bain and chairman Alastair Johnston
Manager Walter Smith (left) has been allowed to buy players this season

Rangers have announced a year of profit and a substantial increase in turnover that has enabled the Scottish champions to reduce their bank debt by £3.7m.

Debt problems had meant the Glasgow club were unable to buy players for nearly two years until this summer.

But the total debt has been reduced to £27.1m in the financial year to June.

Rangers increased their turnover by £16.6m to £56.3m and recorded a £5m profit, having experienced a loss of more than £17m the previous year.

The Ibrox club retained the Scottish Premier League title last season and won the Co-operative Insurance Cup.

They also benefited financially from participation in the group stages of the Champions League and Rangers chairman Alastair Johnston told BBC Scotland that the 42% rise in turnover "demonstrates the significance of the Champions League revenue".

I think it demonstrates that we were able to do the job last year on the field and off the field

Rangers chairman Alastair Johnston

"I think the governance of the club, the attitude of the management and the support of the executive team all coalesced to produce very satisfactory, very gratifying results," he said.

"Time will tell, but I don't think it will be at the expense of the product on the field.

"We have strengthened our balance sheet and paid off £8m in players that we owed money on.

"I think it demonstrates that we were able to do the job last year on the field and off the field."

Johnston said the club mastered their own affairs rather than being dictated to by their bank.

"We continue to make modest repayment on our banking debt," he said.

"We will get that down a little bit more this year and I think we will get it down to a stage that it will become, what in banking terms, becomes a performing loan and we will continue to pay our interest and won't be under pressure to do anything else.

"We agreed a business plan with Lloyds Banking Group in recent months and, whilst we continue to look for new investment, this has enabled an allocation of funding for new players while at the same time retaining the nucleus of the squad that has served us so well in the past two seasons."

Rangers' bank debt incorporating term loan and overdraft facilities fell from £26.1m to £22.3m in the last financial year.

The total debt of just over £27m is a fall from the £31.1m owed for the 12 months until June 2009.


Johnston warned that Rangers must remain vigilant, especially in the current economic climate and at a time when Scotland's champions will find greater hurdles as they attempt to qualify for the Champions League group stage.

"Some caution must be exercised, however, given the effect of the recession on our core revenue streams and the implications to Scottish football of the country's European ranking," he said, praising Rangers' chief executive.

"Challenges therefore still remain, but I am confident that the management team under the guidance of Martin Bain can continue to enhance the company's financial performance whilst maintaining our team's competitive edge on the field."

Rangers remain in the hands of former chairman Sir David Murray after a takeover bid led by property developer Andrew Ellis failed during the summer.

"Every Rangers fan, myself included, knows only too well the issues we have faced in recent times given our debt levels and the distraction of ownership speculation," added Johnston.

"However, we are now in a position to look forward more constructively and positively as we make every effort to achieve continued success for this great football club."

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see also
Club no longer for sale - Rangers
15 Jun 10 |  Rangers
Rangers and bank on better terms
05 Jun 10 |  Rangers
Rangers can handle debt - Smith
06 Apr 10 |  Rangers
Rangers announce jump in profits
17 Feb 10 |  Rangers
Rangers' debts increase to 31m
12 Nov 09 |  Glasgow and West

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