The Premier League will move its London headquarters to Paddington during 2019.
The organisation, which represents England’s 20 top-flight football clubs, has reportedly signed a transfer deal to occupy 30,000 sq.ft. at Derwent London’s Brunel Building in W2.
Other high profile signings at the 243,000 sq.ft. in total Derwent Building, to be completed in H1 2019, include Sony Pictures Entertainment.
The new accommodation is immediately adjacent to Paddington’s main line rail station. A Crossrail/Elizabeth Line station will open here in late 2018 providing fast access to London’s West End, City and Heathrow Airport.
The move will see the Premier League blow the final whistle on its current HQ at 30 Gloucester Place W1 which it took on a 15-year, £800,000 pa lease in 2005. It is believed that the body have outgrown the space there.
In addition Derwent London, who also own Gloucester Place and adjoining buildings, have redevelopment plans for the area.
Agents JLL have apparently advised the Premier League on their planned relocation, although all parties are presently tight-lipped.
The Premier League is certainly in a strong position to afford a swish new home. The 20 constituent clubs ringed up record takings of £4.5bn in the 2016-17 football season. According to figures from Deloitte and reported by the BBC they also returned to profit making £500m pre-tax after recording a small loss in 2015-16.
The most likely reason for the League’s striking recent performance is the three season TV deal for the 2016-19 football seasons. This will earn £5.13bn for the League for the UK broadcast rights granted to Sky and BT.
Once it moves into its new HQ the Premier League might have to start to count the pennies, however. The latest auction, for the 2019-22 UK TV rights, has earned the Gloucester Place outfit a mere £4.464bn.
Fans needn’t worry too much however. Reports suggest that a degree of wage restraint has helped the clubs return to profitability, and that this is likely to continue into the future. After years of record pay deals for players constituent clubs’ pay rolls are now falling in relation to revenue: Last year wage costs rose by 9% to £2.5bn, less than the 25% growth in revenue.
Overall, the revenue-to-wages ratio at the Premier League’s 20 clubs fell from 63% compared to 55% in 2016-17, the lowest ratio since 1997-98.
Dan Jones, Partner and head of Deloitte’s Sports Business Group commented: “The restraint shown by clubs to control their wages (spending only 23p of every extra £ of revenue on increased wages) has translated broadcast revenue success into healthy operating and pre-tax profits.”
He added: “Despite the lack of growth in domestic broadcast deals announced to date, we still expect to see overall revenue growth in the coming seasons, and if this is complemented with prudent cost control, we expect that pre-tax profits will be achieved for the foreseeable future.”