Bayern Munich
Bayern Munich's deputy chairman Jan-Christian Dreesen, CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, senior vice-president Rudolf Schels and President Karl Hopfner (L-R) attend the annual general meeting of the German Bundesliga first division soccer club in Munich, Germany, November 27, 2015. REUTERS/Michael Dalder

MUNICH (Reuters) – Bayern Munich saw annual turnover dip slightly to 523.7 million ($554.86 million) in the 2014/15 fiscal year but still broke the half a billion barrier for the second successive year as club bosses demanded bigger TV deals to close the gap with the Premier League.

The Bundesliga champions, Germany’s richest club and one of the wealthiest in the world, posted a 528 million euros turnover in the last financial year, their best result in 114 years.

Profit stood at 23.8 million euros, up from just over 16 million after tax, while earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation rose to 111.3 million euros, up from 98.7 million last year.

Club membership also rose to 270,329 up from 251,000 the previous year.

But CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge urged the German Football League (DFL) to ensure better television rights deals if German clubs are to remain competitive as higher revenues for English clubs meant bigger salaries for players.

“That means transfer sums and salaries will rise sharply in the coming years. The Bundesliga will feel it and Bayern too. We are already feeling it,” Rummenigge said.

The annual German figure of about 800 million euros for TV rights is a fraction of the almost three billion euros English top flight clubs will net per season from broadcasters Sky SKYB.L and BT BT.L under a new contract running between 2016 and 2019.

“Bayern has its price, I can assure you a very high price, and there are reasons for that,” Rummenigge said. “I am not prepared to accept that Bayern is in 26th place (in annual TV rights revenues in Europe). This cannot be our aim,” he said. “I call on the DFL to urgently increase revenues… for clubs to remain competitive internationally.”

Bayern will receive 73 million euros from TV rights for the current season compared with Manchester United’s 210 million euros, Rummenigge said.

Bayern are top of the Bundesliga and eyeing a record fourth consecutive league title this season after their best start. They are also through to the Champions League knockout stage and in the running for the German Cup.

“We are experiencing the team’s best times of its 115-year history,” Rummenigge said. “Bayern remain financially solid and seriously structured. We want success but want to refinance it. Every euro spent must be a euro earned.”

(Reporting by Karolos Grohmann; Editing by Ken Ferris)

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