Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas on Wednesday dismissed the club's multi-million euro losses as "an accident" explained by the lull in the transfer market.
OL Group, the company that runs Lyon, on Tuesday announced net losses of 35.6 million euros in the financial period leading up to June 30, 2010, having enjoyed profits of 5.3 million euros in the previous year.
"This loss-making exercise is an accident after an extremely profitable run for six years," said Aulas.
"All clubs, even Lyon, can have unprofitable results."
Lyon's revenue also fell by 16.6 percent to 160 million euros.
"In our view it's a minor setback. The results from this year have no bearing on what we have done up until now," said Aulas.
"Transfers aside, it's quite positive, which is not the case for all clubs," added the Lyon president, who pointed out that they had a record season for ticket sales amounting to 24.8 million euros.
"The profits recorded for five years (71 million euros in total) are way superior to the losses announced on Tuesday," he added.
In the summer of 2009, Lyon sold French international striker Karim Benzema to Real Madrid for a fee of 35 million euros, but the period since then has been characterised by high-value acquisitions rather than sales.
The seven-time French champions spent 95.8 million euros on Lisandro Lopez, Michel Bastos, Aly Cissokho and Bafetimbi Gomis in the summer of 2009, before acquiring Dejan Lovren last January and Jimmy Briand in June.
Aulas explained that only three players -- Abdul Kader Keita, Fabio Grosso and Anthony Mounier -- had been sold, for a sum of 14 million euros, compared to an average 55 million euros for the four previous years.
Aulas also noted that the arrival of Yoann Gourcuff for 22 million euros provided a new opportunity "on the sporting front, but also the marketing front".
"We have an agreement with the holders of the Yoann Gourcuff brand and a team devoted to developing this project. That amounts to millions of euros, maybe tens of millions of euros on the horizon in four or five years.
"The management of image rights is becoming a necessity."
Source: AFP Global Edition