18/02/2021 - 19:51

Fremantle Dockers record $1 million loss

18/02/2021 - 19:51


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Fremantle Dockers record $1 million loss

The Fremantle Dockers have reported an operating loss of more than $1 million for the COVID-ravaged 2020 season after receiving almost $3.4 million in Jobkeeper subsidies.

The result came on the back of a 36 per cent decline in year-on-year revenue to $37 million, which forced the club to cut staff numbers by 16 per cent and slash Football Department spending by 25 per cent to $21.2 million.

The Dockers also paid a $1.1 million royalty to its licence holder, the WA Football Commission.

Fremantle chief executive Simon Garlick said membership had exceeded 50,000 for the sixth consecutive season.

“Given the significant impact of the pandemic on the AFL industry and our club, the result is a reasonable outcome, particularly as we were able to remain debt free throughout 2020,” Garlick said.

“Importantly, we were also able to finish the financial year with close to $4 million in cash reserves, despite our year-on-year revenue being reduced by more than 30 per cent. 

“We are very grateful for the overwhelming support of our members and premium partners during the Forever Campaign, their passion and generosity far exceeded our expectations."

Garlick said the club's strong cash position was mostly due to the fact that many members had allowed the club to hold their 2020 membership fees in exchange for a discount on their 2021 fees.

Fremantle's membership revenue fell from $37.7 million in 2019 to $19.7 million in 2020 and AFL distributions fell from $11.7 million to $9.5 million, but sponsorship revenue fell only slightly to $5.4 million.

The club's overall result was broadly in line with those reported by the 10 Victorian clubs, which reported a combined 28 per cent fall in revenue.

But many of those clubs received much higher Jobkeeper subsidies. Premiers Richmond claimed $10.8 million from the federal government, while Hawthorn and Geelong each claimed about $5.4 million. The Victorian clubs also suffered much bigger hits to their sponsorship revenue, with a combined 40 per cent fall.





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