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Manchester United PLC: 2015 Third Quarter Results

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Manchester United (NYSE:MANU; the “Company” and the “Group”) – one of the most popular and successful sports teams in the world – today announced financial results for the 2015 fiscal third quarter and nine months ended 31 March 2015.

Highlights

  • Commercial revenues of lb47.8 million up 11.7% for the quarter.
  • Three sponsorship deals announced in the quarter – Kama Games as official global social games partner, Swissquote as global Forex & Online Financial Trading Partner and Emtel as our triple play partner in Mauritius.
  • Domestic Premier League Live Broadcasting rights up 70% - BSkyB and BT will pay lb5.14 billion for the 2017-19 EPL seasons compared to lb3.0 billion for the 2014-16 seasons.
  • UEFA announced that the amount available for distribution to clubs participating in the Champions League has increased for the 2016-18 cycle to EUR1.257bn representing an increase of over 25%.

Commentary

Ed Woodward, Executive Vice Chairman commented, “Our commercial revenues were up year over year and we are raising EBITDA guidance for fiscal year 2015 from lb90-lb95 million to lb103-lb110 million.

As the season approaches its conclusion, we are pleased with the team’s performance in Louis van Gaal’s first season as manager and are well positioned to achieve a top four finish in the Premier League and to return to European football next year. As we look forward to next season, on the playing side we expect to be challenging for trophies in all competitions and on the commercial side we are excited by the numerous opportunities for further growth, including the first year of our ten year partnership with adidas. ”

Outlook

For fiscal 2015, Manchester United expect:

  • Revenue to be lb385m to lb395m.
  • Adjusted EBITDA to be lb103m to lb110m.
Key Financials (unaudited)
lb million (except adjusted diluted earnings per share) Three months ended

31 March

Nine months ended

31 March

2015 2014 Change 2015 2014 Change
Commercial revenue 47.8 42.8 11.7% 151.0 145.0 4.1%
Broadcasting revenue 21.7 35.6 (39.0%) 66.9 101.8 (34.3%)
Matchday revenue 25.5 37.1 (31.3%) 71.5 90.1 (20.6%)
Total revenue 95.0 115.5 (17.7%) 289.4 336.9 (14.1%)
Adjusted EBITDA* 25.4 40.0 (36.5%) 88.1 113.2 (22.2%)
(Loss)/profit for the period (i.e. net income) (2.9) 11.0 6.0 29.7 (79.8%)
Adjusted (loss)/profit for the period (i.e. adjusted net income)* (7.1) 13.0 1.5 35.0 (95.7%)
Adjusted diluted (loss)/earnings per share (pence)* (4.34) 7.93 0.91 21.49 (95.8%)
Gross debt** 395.4 351.7 12.4% 395.4 351.7 12.4%
Cash and cash equivalents 11.2 34.3 (67.3%) 11.2 34.3 (67.3%)

* Adjusted EBITDA, adjusted (loss)/profit for the period and adjusted diluted (loss)/earnings per share are non-IFRS measures. See “Non-IFRS Measures: Definitions and Use” below and the accompanying Supplemental Notes for the definitions and reconciliations for these non-IFRS measures and the reasons we believe these measures provide useful information to investors regarding the Group’s financial condition and results of operations.

** Gross debt increased primarily because of movements in USDGBP exchange rate from 1.6662 at 31 March 2014 to 1.4861 at 31 March 2015.

Revenue Analysis

Commercial

Commercial revenue for the third quarter was lb47.8 million, an increase of lb5.0 million, or 11.7%, over the prior year quarter.

  • Sponsorship revenue for the third quarter was lb37.5 million, an increase of lb6.8 million, or 22.1%, over the prior year quarter, primarily due to an increase in shirt and other sponsorships.
  • Retail, Merchandising, Apparel & Product Licensing revenue for the third quarter was lb7.6 million, a decrease of lb0.8 million, or 9.5%, over the prior year quarter, primarily due to reduced Nike guaranteed revenue due to non-participation in UEFA competitions in the current season.
  • Mobile & Content revenue for the third quarter was lb2.7 million, a decrease of lb1.0 million, or 27.0%, over the prior year quarter, due to the expiration of a few of our mobile partnerships.

Broadcasting

Broadcasting revenue for the third quarter was lb21.7 million, a decrease of lb13.9 million, or 39.0%, over the prior year quarter, primarily due to five fewer FAPL live broadcast games and two fewer FAPL home games in the current quarter, and non-participation in the UEFA Champions League.

Matchday

Matchday revenue for the third quarter was lb25.5 million, a decrease of lb11.6 million, or 31.3%, over the prior year quarter, primarily due to two fewer FAPL home games in the current quarter and non-participation in the UEFA Champions League.

Other Financial Information

Operating expenses

Total operating expenses for the third quarter were lb99.0 million, an increase of lb7.5 million, or 8.2%, over the prior year quarter.

Staff costs

Staff costs for the third quarter were lb50.2 million, a decrease of lb3.2 million, or 6.0%, over the prior year quarter.

Other operating expenses

Other operating expenses for the third quarter were lb19.4 million, a decrease of lb2.7 million, or 12.2%, over the prior year quarter, primarily due to non-participation in the UEFA Champions League.

Depreciation & amortization

Depreciation for the third quarter was lb2.5 million, an increase of lb0.3 million, or 13.6%, over the prior year quarter. Amortization for the third quarter was lb25.7 million, an increase of lb11.9 million, or 86.2%, over the prior year quarter. The unamortized balance of players’ registrations at 31 March 2015 was lb237.0 million.

Exceptional items

Exceptional items for the third quarter were lb1.2 million being the present value of the additional contributions the Club is expected to pay to remedy the revised deficit of the Football League pension scheme as per the latest triennial actuarial valuation at 31 August 2014. Exceptional items for the prior year quarter were lbnil.

Net finance costs

Net finance costs for the third quarter were lb5.8 million, a decrease of lb0.1 million, or 1.7%, over the prior year quarter.

Tax

The tax credit for the third quarter was lb8.5 million, compared to an expense of lb9.5 million in the prior year quarter.

Cash flows

Net cash used in operating activities for the third quarter was lb15.0 million, an increase of lb2.4 million over the prior year quarter.

Capital expenditure on property, plant and equipment for the third quarter was lb0.3 million, a decrease of lb1.4 million over the prior year quarter.

Net player and other intangible assets capital expenditure for the third quarter was lb11.0 million, a decrease of lb12.3 million over the prior year quarter.

Conference Call Information

The Company’s conference call to review third quarter fiscal 2015 results will be broadcast live over the internet today, 14 May 2015 at 8:00 a.m. Eastern Time and will be available on Manchester United’s investor relations website at http://ir.manutd.com. Thereafter, a replay of the webcast will be available for thirty days.

About Manchester United

Manchester United is one of the most popular and successful sports team in the world, playing one of the most popular spectator sports on Earth.

Through our 137-year heritage we have won 62 trophies, enabling us to develop the world’s leading sports brand and a global community of 659 million followers. Our large, passionate community provides Manchester United with a worldwide platform to generate significant revenue from multiple sources, including sponsorship, merchandising, product licensing, new media & mobile, broadcasting and matchday.

Cautionary Statement

This press release contains forward-looking statements. You should not place undue reliance on such statements because they are subject to numerous risks and uncertainties relating to the Company’s operations and business environment, all of which are difficult to predict and many are beyond the Company’s control. Forward-looking statements include information concerning the Company’s possible or assumed future results of operations, including descriptions of its business strategy. These statements often include words such as “may,” “might,” “will,” “could,” “would,” “should,” “expect,” “plan,” “anticipate,” “intend,” “seek,” “believe,” “estimate,” “predict,” “potential,” “continue,” “contemplate,” “possible” or similar expressions. The forward-looking statements contained in this press release are based on our current expectations and estimates of future events and trends, which affect or may affect our businesses and operations. You should understand that these statements are not guarantees of performance or results. They involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and assumptions. Although the Company believes that these forward-looking statements are based on reasonable assumptions, you should be aware that many factors could affect its actual financial results or results of operations and could cause actual results to differ materially from those in these forward-looking statements. These factors are more fully discussed in the “Risk Factors” section and elsewhere in the Company’s Registration Statement on Form F-1, as amended (File No. 333-182535) and the Company’s Annual Report on Form 20-F (File No. 001-35627).

Non-IFRS Measures: Definitions and Use

1. Adjusted EBITDA

Adjusted EBITDA is defined as profit for the period before depreciation, amortization, profit on disposal of players’ registrations, exceptional items, net finance costs, and tax.

We believe adjusted EBITDA is useful as a measure of comparative operating performance from period to period and among companies as it is reflective of changes in pricing decisions, cost controls and other factors that affect operating performance, and it removes the effect of our asset base (primarily depreciation and amortization), capital structure (primarily finance costs), and items outside the control of our management (primarily taxes). Adjusted EBITDA has limitations as an analytical tool, and you should not consider it in isolation, or as a substitute for an analysis of our results as reported under IFRS as issued by the IASB. A reconciliation of profit for the period to adjusted EBITDA is presented in supplemental note 2.

2. Adjusted (loss)/profit for the period (i.e. adjusted net income)

Adjusted (loss)/profit for the period is calculated, where appropriate, by adjusting for charges/credits related to exceptional items, foreign exchange gains/losses on US dollar denominated bank accounts, fair value movements on derivative financial instruments, and hedge ineffectiveness on cash flow hedges, adding/subtracting the actual tax expense/credit for the period, and subtracting/adding the adjusted tax expense/credit for the period (based on an normalized tax rate of 35%; 2014: 35%). The normalized tax rate of 35% is management’s estimate of the tax rate likely to be applicable to the Group in the long-term.

We believe that in assessing the comparative performance of the business, in order to get a clearer view of the underlying financial performance of the business, it is useful to strip out the distorting effects of charges/credits related to ‘one-off’ transactions and then to apply a ‘normalized’ tax rate (for both the current and prior periods) of the US federal income tax rate of 35%. A reconciliation of (loss)/profit for the period to adjusted (loss)/profit for the period is presented in supplemental note 3.

3. Adjusted basic and diluted (loss)/earnings per share

Adjusted basic and diluted (loss)/earnings per share are calculated by dividing the adjusted (loss)/profit for the period by the weighted average number of ordinary shares in issue during the period. Adjusted diluted (loss)/earnings per share is calculated by adjusting the weighted average number of ordinary shares in issue during the period to assume conversion of all dilutive potential ordinary shares. We have one category of dilutive potential ordinary shares: share awards pursuant to the 2012 Equity Incentive Plan (the “Equity Plan”). Share awards pursuant to the Equity Plan are assumed to have been converted into ordinary shares at the beginning of the financial year. Adjusted basic and diluted (loss)/earnings per share are presented in supplemental note 3.

Key Performance Indicators
Three months ended Nine months ended
31 March 31 March
2015 2014 2015 2014
Commercial % of total revenue 50.3% 37.1% 52.2% 43.0%
Broadcasting % of total revenue 22.8% 30.8% 23.1% 30.2%
Matchday % of total revenue 26.9% 32.1% 24.7% 26.8%
Home Matches Played
FAPL 5 7 15 16
UEFA competitions - 1 - 4
Domestic Cups 2 2 2 4
Away Matches Played
UEFA competitions - 1 - 4
Domestic Cups 3 1 4 2
Other
Employees at period end 791 875 791 875
Staff costs % of revenue 52.8% 46.2% 51.2% 46.9%
Phasing of Premier League home games Quarter 1 Quarter 2 Quarter 3 Quarter 4 Total
2014/15 season 3 7 5 4 19
2013/14 season 3 6 7 3 19
2012/13 season 3 7 5 4 19

CONSOLIDATED INCOME STATEMENT

(unaudited; in lb thousands, except per share and shares outstanding data)

Three months ended

31 March

Nine months ended

31 March

2015 2014 2015 2014
Revenue 94,970 115,495 289,401 336,943
Operating expenses (98,976) (91,499) (284,864) (269,422)
(Loss)/profit on disposal of players’ registrations (1,556) 2,361 18,204 4,203
Operating (loss)/profit (5,562) 26,357 22,741 71,724
Finance costs (5,904) (5,959) (18,381) (21,562)
Finance income 37 36 136 143
Net finance costs (5,867) (5,923) (18,245) (21,419)
(Loss)/profit before tax (11,429) 20,434 4,496 50,305
Tax credit/(expense) 8,555 (9,520) 1,519 (20,644)
(Loss)/profit for the period (2,874) 10,914 6,015 29,661
Basic (loss)/earnings per share:
Basic (loss)/earnings per share (pence) (1.75) 6.66 3.67 18.11
Weighted average number of ordinary shares outstanding (thousands) 163,797 163,812 163,794 163,815
Diluted (loss)/earnings per share:
Diluted (loss)/earnings per share (pence) (1.75) 6.66 3.66 18.11
Weighted average number of ordinary shares outstanding (thousands) 164,140 163,812 164,140 163,815

CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEET

(unaudited; in lb thousands)

As of

31 March

2015

As of

30 June

2014

As of

31 March

2014

ASSETS
Non-current assets
Property, plant and equipment 252,494 254,859 255,332
Investment property 13,587 13,671 13,700
Goodwill 421,453 421,453 421,453
Players’ registrations and other intangible assets 237,760 204,572 161,769
Derivative financial instruments 1,323 791
Trade and other receivables 1,000 41 141
Deferred tax asset 147,284 129,631 128,368
1,074,901 1,024,227 981,554
Current assets
Derivative financial instruments 1,354 317
Trade and other receivables 107,716 125,119 77,014
Current tax receivable 124
Cash and cash equivalents 11,204 66,365 34,344
120,398 191,484 111,675
Total assets 1,195,299 1,215,711 1,093,229

CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEET (continued)

(unaudited; in lb thousands)

As of

31 March

2015

As of

30 June

2014

As of

31 March

2014

EQUITY AND LIABILITIES
Equity
Share capital 52 52 52
Share premium 68,822 68,822 68,822
Merger reserve 249,030 249,030 249,030
Hedging reserve (6,566) 25,918 21,156
Retained earnings 161,872 154,828 160,431
473,210 498,650 499,491
Non-current liabilities
Derivative financial instruments 4,087 1,602 1,919
Trade and other payables 39,827 42,464 27,941
Borrowings 392,480 326,803 339,679
Deferred revenue 24,464 15,631 14,440
Deferred tax liabilities 26,569 28,837 29,140
487,427 415,337 413,119
Current liabilities
Derivative financial instruments 2,340 875 1,072
Current tax liabilities 1,753 2,999 3,147
Trade and other payables 118,135 102,232 76,468
Borrowings 2,950 15,005 11,991
Deferred revenue 109,484 180,613 87,941
234,662 301,724 180,619
Total equity and liabilities 1,195,299 1,215,711 1,093,229

CONSOLIDATED STATEMENT OF CASH FLOWS

(unaudited; in lb thousands)

Three months ended

31 March

Nine months ended

31 March

2015 2014 2015 2014
Cash flows from operating activities
Cash (used in)/generated from operations (see supplemental note 4) (3,189) (3,970) 45,732 30,693
Interest paid (10,907) (8,830) (24,136) (22,794)
Debt finance costs relating to borrowings - (824) (123)
Interest received 368 36 457 143
Tax (paid)/refund (1,271) 175 (2,281) (1,071)
Net cash (used in)/generated from operating activities (14,999) (12,589) 18,948 6,848
Cash flows from investing activities
Purchases of property, plant and equipment (293) (1,679) (4,086) (8,557)
Proceeds from sale of property, plant and equipment - - 50
Purchases of players’ registrations and other intangible assets (14,406) (24,815) (101,272) (62,102)
Proceeds from sale of players’ registrations 3,447 1,500 20,163 8,556
Net cash used in investing activities (11,252) (24,994) (85,195) (62,053)
Cash flows from financing activities
Proceeds from borrowings - 4,704
Repayment of borrowings (102) (97) (301) (284)
Net cash (used in)/generated from financing activities (102) (97) 4,403 (284)
Net decrease in cash and cash equivalents (26,353) (37,680) (61,844) (55,489)
Cash and cash equivalents at beginning of period 37,115 72,144 66,365 94,433
Foreign exchange gains/(losses) on cash and cash equivalents 442 (120) 6,683 (4,600)
Cash and cash equivalents at end of period 11,204 34,344 11,204 34,344

SUPPLEMENTAL NOTES

1 General information

Manchester United plc (the “Company”) and its subsidiaries (together the “Group”) is a professional football club together with related and ancillary activities. The Company incorporated under the Companies Law (2011 Revision) of the Cayman Islands, as amended and restated from time to time.

2 Reconciliation of profit for the period to adjusted EBITDA

Three months ended

31 March

Nine months ended

31 March

2015

lb’000

2014

lb’000

2015

lb’000

2014

lb’000

(Loss)/profit for the period (2,874) 10,914 6,015 29,661
Adjustments:
Tax (credit)/expense (8,555) 9,520 (1,519) 20,644
Net finance costs 5,867 5,923 18,245 21,419
Loss/(profit) on disposal of players’ registrations 1,556 (2,361) (18,204) (4,203)
Exceptional items 1,275 2,336 293
Amortization 25,708 13,841 73,931 39,163
Depreciation 2,469 2,206 7,365 6,274
Adjusted EBITDA 25,446 40,043 88,169 113,251

3 Reconciliation of (loss)/profit for the period to adjusted (loss)/profit for the period and adjusted basic and diluted (loss)/earnings per share

Three months ended

31 March

Nine months ended

31 March

2015

lb’000

2014

lb’000

2015

lb’000

2014

lb’000

(Loss)/profit for the period (2,874) 10,914 6,015 29,661
Exceptional items 1,275 2,336 293
Foreign exchange losses/(gains) on US dollar denominated bank accounts 468 (530) 2,712
Fair value movement on derivative financial instruments (1,511) 90 (3,997) 1,640
Ineffectiveness of cash flow hedges 234 (543) - (791)
Tax (credit)/expense (8,555) 9,520 (1,519) 20,644
Adjusted (loss)/profit before tax (10,963) 19,981 2,305 54,159

Adjusted tax credit/(expense) (using a normalised tax rate of 35% (2014: 35%))

3,837 (6,993) (807) (18,956)
Adjusted (loss)/profit for the period (i.e. adjusted net income) (7,126) 12,988 1,498 35,203
Adjusted basic (loss)/earnings per share:
Adjusted basic (loss)/earnings per share (pence) (4.35) 7.93 0.91 21.49
Weighted average number of ordinary shares outstanding (thousands) 163,797 163,812 163,794 163,815
Adjusted diluted (loss)/earnings per share:
Adjusted diluted (loss)/earnings per share (pence) (4.34) 7.93 0.91 21.49
Weighted average number of ordinary shares outstanding (thousands) 164,140 163,812 164,140 163,815

4 Cash generated from operations

Three months ended

31 March

Nine months ended

31 March

2015

lb’000

2014

lb’000

2015

lb’000

2014

lb’000

(Loss)/profit for the period (2,874) 10,914 6,015 29,661
Tax (credit)/expense (8,555) 9,520 (1,519) 20,644
(Loss)/profit before tax (11,429) 20,434 4,496 50,305
Depreciation 2,469 2,206 7,365 6,274
Impairment - - 293
Amortization 25,708 13,841 73,931 39,163
Loss/(profit) on disposal of players’ registrations 1,556 (2,361) (18,204) (4,203)
Net finance costs 5,867 5,923 18,245 21,419
Profit on disposal of property, plant and equipment - 5 (43)
Equity-settled share-based payments 322 377 1,029 918
Foreign exchange losses/(gains) on operating activities 438 97 (530) 469
Other fair value losses/(gains) on derivative financial instruments 3,131 (58) 4,342 (184)
Reclassified from hedging reserve (1,383) (260) (3,774) (778)
(Increase)/decrease in trade and other receivables (22,468) (7,594) 29,930 (11,535)
Decrease in trade and other payables and deferred revenue (7,400) (36,575) (71,103) (69,930)
Decrease in provisions - - (1,475)
Cash (used in)/generated from operations (3,189) (3,970) 45,732 30,693

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