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Volume 6 No. 214


Spanish Basketball League (ACB) side Bilbao Basket President Xabier Jon Davalillo said that the club has reduced its debt from €5.6M ($7.4M) to €3.6M ($4.8M) this summer "thanks to rebates agreed upon with creditors, above all with players," according to Alfonso Herrán of AS. Davalillo took over the club in May "after the departure of former majority shareholder Gorka Arrinda" and the club is "expecting to reduce its debts to zero in three years." Under Garrinda, the club was making €3.5M per year and spending €5.5M "each season." Bilbao execs "have also agreed to a plan to make payments owed" to Spain's tax authorities and social security. The viability plan the club presented "would see the cost of the roster reduced" from €2.7M ($3.6M) to €1.9M ($2.5M) for this season. The players with the most expensive contracts -- Dairis Bertans, Axel Hervelle, Raúl López and Álex Mumbrú -- will "agree to lower their salaries by 10%." With the departures of Germán Gabriel and Roger Grimau and the arrival of "cheaper replacements," the cost of the roster will be €1.9M. That "figure will be even lower next season, when the contracts for every player except Mumbrú will expire." The "second point of savings will be on general spending," which was at €1.7M ($2.2M) and will drop to €700,000 ($923,700) (AS, 8/26).

TalkSport owner UTV Media’s pre-tax profits jumped more than 60% in the first half, "thanks to a World Cup ad spend boost and an improving economy," according to Mark Sweney of the London GUARDIAN. UTV Media, "which also owns the ITV franchise for Northern Ireland," reported a rise in pre-tax profits of 62% to £10M ($17M) in the first six months of the year. Total group revenues rose 13% to £57.8M ($96M). TalkSport reported a revenue rise of 33% in the first half, "thanks to the World Cup." UTV Chair Richard Huntington said, "After the very strong growth recorded during the World Cup period, revenue increases in our GB radio division have moderated to a forecast 5 percent growth in the third quarter" (GUARDIAN, 8/26).