In the last part of a post-season interview on Manchester City’s website, chairman Khaldoon Al Mubarak has discussed the future growth of City Football Group (CFG) and the past financial year for the clubs in its roster.
Al Mubarak told City TV that CFG, which includes football clubs New York City FC, Melbourne City FC, Yokohama F Marinos and Manchester City, will be looking to expand when the “opportunity arises”.
“We are looking at opportunities – you can expect us to add to the number of clubs we have already within that organisation. It’s too early for me to pinpoint but we are looking at opportunities. We’ll see how it goes. At the right time, at the right place we will tell you,” Al Mubarak said.
During the interview, the chairman detailed the other clubs that come under the group’s banner.
New York City FC, which is currently playing its second season, finished its first in 17th place in the overall Major League Soccer rankings. Elsewhere, Melbourne City FC came fourth in its last two seasons, while its women’s team won all twelve of its regular season games and achieved success in the League Grand Finals.
Al Mubarak said he believed that “in footballing terms success can only be judged by winning the respective leagues.”
Looking at Manchester City’s financial standing and concerns raised regarding China Media Capital’s (CMC) investment in the group, Al Mubarak revealed the club is expecting a profit in its 2015-2016 season.
Although no figures were revealed, he said: “We are financially sustainable and we are consistently profitable.”
In October 2015, the Premiership football club reported its first profit since being bought by Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed’s Abu Dhabi United Group in 2008.
The club reported a £10.7m (Dhs 57.2m) after-tax profit for the 2014-2015 season, due to record annual revenues of £351.8m and a reduced wage bill.
“Sheikh Mansour had a view and a dream from day one that he would invest in a club, he would build value, he would put a lot of commitment into it but that the club would be financially sustainable and profitable.” Al Mubarak told City TV.
The chairman reassured fans that CMC Holdings, which valued the group at $3bn in December after paying $400m for a 13 per cent stake, would remain a minority shareholder.
He said that Sheikh Mansour’s commitment to the team was “untouchable” and that CFG does not anticipate any further sales.
“Sheikh Mansour is deeply committed as an owner and deeply passionate about this organisation, this group and particularly Manchester City.”
However, Al Mubarak said he believed China was an important market financially and commercially for the group’s ambitions.
“China is a huge market for us with tremendous potential and value long term for us,” Mubarak commented, adding that CFG would potentially invest in a local club there in the future.