Tottenham have taken out a £175 million loan from the Bank of England under the government’s COVID-19 Corporate Financing Facility scheme, with the club estimating revenue losses of £200 million due to the pandemic.
The club has utilised the government’s COVID Corporate Financing Facility scheme, available to select companies with the highest “investment grade” credit rating, which make significant contributions to the British economy.
Spurs insisted the loan, which is due to be repaid in April 2021 at 0.5 per cent interest, “will not be used for player acquisitions” but said it would give the club “financial flexibility and additional working capital during these challenging times”.
Spurs spent an estimated £1.2 billion on their new stadium, which opened last year, and they announced the refinancing of £525 million worth of debut with two banks last September.
The club’s final five home matches of the season are now due to be played behind closed doors, with season ticket-holders being refunded, while Spurs are also facing revenue losses from the cancellation of a number of lucrative events at their stadium, including two NFL matches scheduled for Autumn.
Among the other businesses to use CCFF are budget airlines Ryanair and EasyJet (both £600 million), John Lewis (£300 million), Rolls Royce (£300 million), ASOS (£100 million) and Greggs (£150 million), the Bank of England has announced.
Spurs reversed their decision to use the government’s furloughing scheme for non-playing staff after a fierce backlash from supporters in April.
Spurs chairman Daniel Levy, who has warned that clubs “big or small” could go out of business during the pandemic, said it was “imperative” to find a way to return paying supporters to events as soon as possible.
“We have always run this Club on a self-sustaining commercial basis,” Levy said. “I said as early as 18 March that, in all my 20 years at the Club, there have been many hurdles along the way but none of this magnitude – the COVID-19 pandemic has shown itself to be the most serious of them all.”