There is a weird trend that goes on and on in Rome but I would say in Italy as well. It looks like those managers working in the world of football are not able to boost the revenue from merchandising and matchday.
Let’s say that since James Pallotta acquired the majority stake of AS Roma most of us believed that the American business approach would have sharply increased revenues. It seems to be clear that the Bostonian investor and his group of collaborators applied good marketing strategies and substantially increased the value of the club, however, according to some of the numbers there’s a lot to do to bring the giallorssi in the elite of football. The data relative to merchandising and matchday are alarming.
By analyzing the financial statement that AS Roma released on December 31st, 2013, the revenue from merchandising were up to € 3.3 million. Although the club improved the official website, the online store, and the overall digital presence, this voice of the report substantially remained unchanged. The revenue from merchandising reported on the official documents are the following:
- €3 million (2013);
- €4 million (2014);
- €4.5 million (2015);
- €5.6 million (2016).
This constant trend is very likely due to the fact that AS Roma needs to win something locally and in Europe to catch the passion of those football lovers that are living abroad. In order to do so, it would be necessary to heavily invest in the transfer market, purchasing players that are well known, strong, and appealing to foreign fans. Although this would be the fastest approach to solving this issue, the club is experiencing some economic constraints and is, therefore, relying on a long term strategy, the construction of the Stadio della Roma that would increase the overall revenues.
The second aspect that must be analyzed is the matchday revenue. It’s more than one season that the giallorossi are playing without the propulsion of the Curva Sud. This happened due to the restrictive measures that the Prefecture of Rome imposed on the fans at the Olimpico stadium in Rome. The barriers erected within the two Curvas pushed fans away from the stadium and AS Roma suffered deep economic damage from it.
The matchday revenue recorded in the last four financial statements are the following:
- €9 million (2013);
- €3 million (2014);
- €5 million (2015);
- € 19 million (2016);
Obviously, the qualification or non-qualification to the Champions League made a big difference in revenue, however, there is also something else to point out. In the last couple of years, knowing that the fans were in an open contest against the Italian institutions, AS Roma missed the opportunity to attract people to the stadium by decreasing the ticket price. The head of the ticket service Carlo Feliziani once mentioned that this approach was not possible because it would have been unfair to those who purchased the seasonal pass but something else could have been done.