Sunday, December 5

Laporta passes accounts with the inheritance of Bartomeu

  • Barça announces losses of 481 million and sets the budget for the 21-22 season at 765 after the board of directors meeting

  • Ferran Reverter will present the Due Diligence on October 6 and the Assembly of Committees will be held on the weekend of the 16 and 17 of the same month

In full debate on the continuity of Ronald Koeman, Joan Laporta he is already beginning to pass accounts and set dates to discuss with the delegates the “poisoned”, as he himself described it, “inheritance” of Bartholomew. The first Barça de Laporta in its second stage will have a budget of 765 million euros, already below the 828 that the former president had set last year just before his resignation, and far, far away, of course, from the 1,060 million (19 -20), just before the outbreak of the pandemic, which portrays the delicate situation that strangles the club.

In a very important meeting of the board held yesterday, in which concern was expressed about Koeman’s management of the team, it was also confirmed that last season’s losses amounted to 481 million euros, the worst figure ever seen in the history of the club. Laporta will have to submit all these figures to the club’s assembly of delegates, set for the weekend of October 16-17, coinciding with Valencia’s visit to Camp Nou.

The economic autopsy

But first, Barça members will receive direct information from Ferran Reverter, the new CEO, on the Due diligence, the economic autopsy of Bartomeu’s management, which could even lead to criminal measures, as Laporta suggested at the time. This exposure of Reverter will determine, and already with all accuracy, the dimension of the economic hole that has led the club to the worst scenario, even worse than Laporta himself could intuit. And it will allow, at the same time, to know if those red numbers, which have conditioned sports planning in such a way that they have caused, according to the president, the departure of Messi to PSG and the transfer of Griezmann to Atlético, they have a judicial response from the board.

At the moment, all the scenarios are being studied, waiting, in addition, for the response of the assembly of delegates, which must approve (or not) the new accounts and the losses, close to 500 million euros, something never seen before at Barça. The sporting decline of Barça (a Cup title in the last two years and the conquest of the Champions League dates back to 2015) is also certified by the economic crisis, with the salary mass of the workforce around 80% after that, with Messi and Griezmann, it was 110% with respect to income.

Hence, the capital importance acquired by the first public appearance of Reverter, the man who has control and the key to the club’s box. Those results, after several months of collecting data and information, will arrive 10 days before Laporta will present them directly to the assembly. But the president is not only adjusting accounts with the dangerous legacy received from Bartomeu but also wants to introduce changes in the future management of the club. The board yesterday approved a package to reform the club’s statutes with a couple of important measures.

The first would be, if the delegates authorize it, “the possibility of registering as a member electronically”. The second has even more depth because Laporta, as explained by the club in its official statement, “wants to reduce the next terms of the board of directors to five years.” Currently, it was six years, as indicated by the last statutory reform, promoted precisely by Laporta in 2009 when he was running out of his second and last term, with no possible option then for re-election.

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Twelve years ago, the assembly decided to accept Laporta’s idea of ​​going from four to six years. And now it is Laporta himself who is promoting another change. But in reverse. Neither four nor six but five years. All pending, of course, the decision of the partners. The board, on the other hand, has made an important decision about Barça Studios, one of the most attractive business legs for Bartomeu, who wanted to sell it together with three other areas (retail, academies and Barça Innovation Hub) for 400 million euros sharing the property with investment funds.

Laporta, on the other hand, has chosen to establish a company Barça Produccions SL, “which will integrate the audiovisual activity of Barça Studios and where 100% of the social participation will be owned by the club.” Although that does not rule out the contribution of an industrial partner to generate more content in an area that already allows income close to 30 million euros. And in this way the club wants to ensure absolute control over the audiovisual business, in addition to looking for a new main sponsor for the shirt because Rakuten does not seem willing to renew.

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