University of Liverpool income rises 10% to £675m

University of Liverpool

The University of Liverpool has reported that its total income increased 9.8% to £675.1 million in the year ended July 31, 2023, “mainly due to higher tuition fees and funding body grants as we grow both our teaching and research portfolios.”

The university’s annual report revealed a surplus of £10.3 million compared to a deficit of £141.2 million in 2022.

The prior year results were materially impacted by an increase of £142.3 million in the Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS) pension provision following implementation of the 2020 actuarial valuation.

The university’s tuition fee income increased 11.1% to £342.5 million, with overall student numbers up 4.1%, reflecting increased demand from overseas students.

Research grants and contracts income increased 3.9% to £118 million.

Staff costs decreased 28% to £347.4 million. Prior year staff costs included a “large non-cash cost of £141.6m in relation to the USS pension provision.”

Excluding pension movements and compensation payments, staff costs increased 9.1% year on year “reflecting cost of living increases along with some investment in additional posts.”

University of Liverpool chief financial 0fficer Nicola Davies wrote: “Overall, income has increased by £60.2m with significant growth in undergraduate and PGT students impacting both tuition fees and funding body grants.

“Research income and awards have sustained the significant increase seen in recent years which will continue to have a positive impact in the future.

“Pay costs (excluding non-cash pension adjustments and restructuring costs) of £353.8m (2022 – £324.1m) are £29.6m higher than prior year reflecting a cost of living pay increase and investment in additional staff.

“As expected, other operating expenses have also increased by £34.5m to £247.8m (2022 – £213.3m) reflecting costs associated with the growth in students and increased spend in areas of strategic investment.

“Our longer-term strategy has been to achieve a surplus of at least 4% in order to enable continued investment in strategic priorities.

“This target was last achieved in 2020/21, however the reduction in overseas students during the pandemic combined with recent inflationary pressures have resulted in surpluses below our target.

“We expect this to continue in the shorter term while overseas student numbers are recovering and we remain in a high inflationary environment.

“Our plans for growth will enable a return to higher surpluses over the next five year period.”