A new era of fiscal responsibility in European basketball will get underway as Financial Fair Play rules agreed to following several years of study and input by Turkish Airlines Euroleague clubs are set to take effect next month with the start of the 2015-16 season.
The regulations, which will apply to each fiscal year between July 1 and June 30, seek to ensure a greater balance in the clubs' budgets in order to help them and the league build consistent and sustainable growth over years.
Under the new measures, any Euroleague club that does not guarantee a minimum budget of €4 million will not be permitted to participate in the competition.
Rejection is also possible if a club has overdue debts or its aggregate budget deficit averages more than 10% over the three previous seasons, although in both cases, registration may be allowed if an alternative compliance plan is approved by the company.
If other requirements are breached, such as holding player salaries to 65% or less and shareholder contributions to 75% or less of budgets, clubs will be subject to disciplinary proceedings.
Euroleague Basketball's efforts to instill the tenets of Financial Fair Play in its competitions date to 2012, when a Financial Commission was formed to establish principles of greater fiscal responsibility to be applied to participating clubs.
Euroleague clubs have not only approved all of the impending regulations through the ECA Shareholders Meeting, but have actively cooperated in the formulation of Financial Fair Play by opening their books for audits. First steps in the agreed measures have already included increased financial uniformity and alignment of accounting practices between the clubs, a measure that has also been approved for Eurocup clubs for the coming season. Eurocup clubs are expected to be incorporated into a full Financial Fair Play regimen in the future.
A control commission formed by both Euroleague Basketball and independent experts will monitor the implementation of the Financial Fair Play regulations.
The Financial Fair Play rules are expected to evolve in order to adapt to the different markets of the participating clubs with the final goal of achieving sustainability for all of them in the nearest future.