Cardiff Blues have posted an accounting profit of £3,000 to the year ending June 2019, according to accounts published on the Companies House website.
The company which operates both Cardiff Blues and Cardiff RFC, ‘Cardiff Blues Limited’ was boosted by the payment of Research and Development Tax Credits for the last three financial years which wiped out a pre-tax operating loss of £500,000 up to June 2019.
That operating loss in itself is down significantly on the year to June 2018, when it was £1.97m, thanks largely to additional funding from the Welsh Rugby Union and the Guinness Pro14’s television deal with Premier Sports.
There was also an increase in commercial revenue with sponsorship and hospitality up £500,000 and food and beverages brining in £600,000 after being taken in-house rather than being sold through an outsourced contract. Turnover was up 35.9% overall to just over £13m.
However, expenditure also grew by £2.4m, with £1.5m invested in the rugby department and the majority of other costs associated with bringing food and beverages in-house.
This being the second year of accounting profit stems from the exceptional income that was created when Peter Thomas and Martyn Ryan agreed to write off, or exchange for non-voting shares, a substantial amount of debt. However, Peter was still required to put £1.5m into the business last season with his ongoing support appreciated immensely.
In his first Chairman’s Statement since taking over in January, Alun Jones writes “with a healthier balance sheet we can now focus on the future and we will imminently share a long-term strategy, which I have been working on with chief executive Richard Holland and his team. This will clearly and concisely present our strategy for the forthcoming years and detail exactly how we will achieve our ambitions.
“Dialogue continues with Cardiff Athletic Club (CAC) over a new lease at the Cardiff Arms Park. Cardiff Blues enjoy a very good relationship with CAC through their directors and their chairman, Keith Morgan. All our discussions point towards a shared ambition to deliver a new, long-term lease at the Cardiff Arms Park beyond 2022.
“This is an exciting time for Cardiff Blues, and I would invite you to feel enthused about what the future holds with the potential third party investment combined with the steps we have taken ourselves to formulate a clear strategy.”