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Newcastle United claim it “altered its retail operations in February 2013” and that “Sports Direct took over fulfilment of the web/mail order operation in 2015”.  The club also state “it should make us more money over time and it is likely that more clubs will do it in the future”.  As yet it’s not apparent that any other Premier League club have indeed taken up the savings allegedly offered by spending millions of pounds at Sports Direct annually.
April 2019
The Newcastle United financial results to June 30 2018 reported sales betwen the club and Sports Direct, with Newcastle paying almost £1.5m to Sports Direct.

“The Group made sales of £385,000 (2017: £572,000) and purchased goods to the value of £1,448,000 (2017: £1,281,000) from Sports Direct and subsidiary companies” – Source


September 2018

Fans Forum minutes

All revenue from the club store goes directly to the club, irrespective of the name on the receipt.  Sports Direct operates the store for the club, which means the overheads associated with staffing, managing stock and a large warehousing operation are significantly reduced.  If a shirt or merchandise is bought from another store, that revenue does not come to the club directly.

Does the club receive every penny generated from the store, or are there fees involved? The figures for online sales are pretty different in Sports Direct’s accounts.
The club pays Sports Direct for the stock sold in the store, which is noted in the club’s accounts. The revenue from the store goes directly into the club’s bank account. Online sales are accounted for differently but the net profit for the club is unaffected.

During the meeting is was agreed that further clarification would be provided on online sales subsequent to the meeting. This detail is now included below:
Sports Direct took over fulfilment of the web/mail order operation in 2015. This means stock now comes from them directly for web sales, rather than the club having to purchase the stock from Sports Direct. For the avoidance of doubt, profit for the club is unaffected.

If someone came in and bought the club, would the retail operation change?
The club stated that a new owner would most likely look at all key supplier relationships. Source


May 2018
The Newcastle United financial results to June 30 2017 reported sales betwen the club and Sports Direct, with Newcastle paying almost £1.3m to Sports Direct.

“The Group made sales of £572,000 (2016: £302,000) and purchased goods to the value of £1,281,000 (2016: £1,209,000) from Sports Direct and subsidiary companies” – Source


April 2017
The Newcastle United financial results to June 30 2016 reported sales betwen the club and Sports Direct, with Newcastle paying over £1.2m to Sports Direct.

“The Group made sales of £302,000 (2015: £264,000) and purchased goods to the value of £1,209,000 (2015: £2,348,000) from Sports Direct and subsidiary companies” – Source


April 2016
The Newcastle United financial results to June 30 2015 reported sales betwen the club and Sports Direct, with Newcastle paying over £2.3m to Sports Direct.

“Newcastle United Football Company Limited, a subsidiary of the company, made sales of £264,000 (2014: £nil) to Sports Direct.com Retail Limited.

“Newcastle United Football Company Limited, a subsidiary of the company, purchased goods to the value of £2,348,000 (2014: £2,796,000) from Sports Direct.com Retail Limited” – Source

April 2015
Club statements following a Channel 4 Dispatches show stated that Newcastle United Club stores were re-badged Sports Direct stores, the first released within an hour of the show airing.

The Club has noted the Channel 4 ‘Dispatches’ programme aired tonight (Monday, 27th April) and in particular the reference to the terms of the retail relationship between the Club and Sports Direct.  The Club is extremely disappointed no-one from Channel 4 contacted the Club for comment.  The information broadcast is wholly inaccurate and the Club will provide further information and clarification tomorrow (Tuesday, 28th April).

The second the following day

Inaccurate media reporting by Channel 4 ‘Dispatches’ – the media mislead again
In reference to our statement last night (Monday, 27th April) regarding the Channel 4 ‘Dispatches’ programme, The Secrets of Sports Direct, Newcastle United would like to clarify the facts for the benefit of supporters.  Last night’s programme made a wholly inaccurate claim regarding the retail relationship between the Club and Sports Direct.
In the Club’s view, the broadcaster deliberately misled Newcastle United supporters and provided yet another example of erroneous media reporting which only serves to further antagonise fans.  In January 2014, in the minutes of its Fans Forum which are published online, the Club confirmed how the retail relationship with Sports Direct works.  For the purpose of clarity, we can reconfirm that 100 per cent of the income from goods bought in the Club’s official stores and on its website are received by the Club and not Sports Direct, as the ‘Dispatches’ programme claimed.  The only money paid by the Club to Sports Direct is for the stock (at cost price), plus a handling fee. This represents far better value than the costs the Club historically incurred in relation to purchasing, storage and distribution.  In fact, the change to our retail operating structure introduced in February 2013, which saw us partner with Sports Direct, increased the profit margin by over 50 per cent. This benefits the Club hugely.  In simple terms, the Club receives more money as a result of this relationship.  Channel 4 failed to contact the Club in order to clarify any facts in relation to our retail operation.  Given that this information was already in the public domain, and had been for over 15 months, we find it incredible that the makers of an investigative current affairs programme chose to air information which was so obviously factually incorrect. – Source

March 2015

The Newcastle United financial results to June 30 2014 reported sales from Sports Direct to Newcastle United of almost £2.8m.

“Newcastle United Football Company Limited, a subsidiary of the company, made sales of £nil (2013: £1,710,000) and purchased goods to the value of £2,796,000 (2013: £841,000) from Sports Direct.com Retail Limited” – Source


February 2014

The Newcastle United financial results to June 30 2015 reported sales betwen the club and Sports Direct, with Newcastle paying over £800k to Sports Direct.

“Newcastle United Football Company Limited, a subsidiary of the company, made sales of £1,710,000 (2012: £nil) and purchased goods to the value of £841,0000 (2012: £nil) from Sports Direct.com Retail Limited” – Source


January 2014
Fans Forum minutes

How does the club’s retail operation work in relation to Sports Direct?The board explained that the club altered its retail operations in February 2013 for business reasons which simply benefit Newcastle United financially.  Firstly, by switching its warehousing from the club’s former smaller premises to Sports Direct’s vast central facility, the club benefits from hugely improved supply chain management without the costs associated with operating its own warehouse.  Secondly, clubs do not receive kits from the manufacturer free-of-charge as part of sponsorship deals.  They still have to purchase all kit in order to sell it to supporters. By outsourcing the buying of that kit and other products for NUFC stores to Sports Direct, the club benefits from far greater buying power. In effect, Sports Direct buys direct from sporting goods manufacturers (i.e. Puma) in far greater quantities than NUFC would need to, achieving even greater value for buying in bulk.  Sports Direct warehouses that stock and as soon as it comes to the NUFC store, the club buys it at cost price plus a handling fee. The handling fee represents much better value than the warehouse fee, warehouse staff etc. that the club would otherwise need to incur.  Accordingly, 100% of the money paid for goods in NUFC stores goes into the football club’s bank account.  The board reiterated that there is nothing hidden and no secrets to the process; it is just a very simple business decision. The idea is that the club should generate more profit. The cost profile of items changes because Sports Direct can buy cheaper than we can. It should make us more money over time and it is likely that more clubs will do it in the future.

When you buy from NUFC Direct and take it back to store, you only get a credit note for the store.The club explained that it is the seller so 100% of funds paid for an item go to NUFC. The management of the stock, however, remains with Sports Direct which is why items must be returned to their warehouse. Sports Direct operates the NUFC Direct website and is therefore responsible for a much-improved online shopping experience.

Why was our retail website selling some Rangers items?The club agreed that should never have happened and explained that because Sports Direct fulfils a similar operation for Portsmouth and Rangers, there had been a human error in the coding behind the website.

In Sports Direct’s annual report, it states NUFC made a payment of £498,000 to Sports Direct. Can you explain it?The club stated that as per the previously explained process, the payment was for the purchase of stock at cost from Sports Direct’s warehouse in Shirebrook plus distribution to NUFC stores and retail customers. The fee is for stock purchased within that financial period. – Source

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