Kevin O'Donovan encouraged by Cork's financial showing as healthy surplus reported

Board publish accounts prior to Saturday's convention
Kevin O'Donovan encouraged by Cork's financial showing as healthy surplus reported

Cork County Board secretary/CEO Kevin O'Donovan. Picture: Eóin Noonan/Sportsfile

Cork County Board secretary/CEO Kevin O’Donovan has welcomed the further stabilisation of the county’s finances.

Ahead of Saturday night’s annual convention – to be held remotely – Cork have reported a surplus of €328,000 and, while there is a loss of €536,000 relating to Páirc Uí Chaoimh, it was a year without concerts and the figure is an improvement of almost €270,000 on 2020.

Commercial income – while only broken down in the accounts between county and club income – was €879,360, up from €546,500.

In his report, O’Donovan noted the brighter financial outlook.

“It was positive to see the county board finances stabilise further in 2021,” he wrote,

“A board surplus for the year of €328,000 (EBITDA – earnings before interest, tax and depreciation) represented the most positive year financially for the county board since the stadium project began and was achieved in a challenging financial environment considering

the effect of Covid-19 and the decrease in attendances at games etc.

“It was in contrast to a comparable loss of €105,000 in 2020. As the majority of gates came in after year-end on September 30, the benefits of increased attendances won’t be seen until next year’s accounts when gate receipts of over €1m will be recorded for the 2021 club championship season with streaming income and season tickets pushing the figure up further.

“On the stadium side, losses of €536,000 (EBITDA) for 2021 showed an improvement on the losses of €810,000 in 2020. This resulted in combined board and stadium losses of €208,000 (EBITDA) for 2021 in comparison to combined losses of €915,000 for 2020 and €646,000 for 2019. Of course, when depreciation and interest are added, losses for the year exceed €2m and the rate at which the stadium is being depreciated will require further consideration

at a future date.

“Another issue which was the cause of much debate and embarrassment in 2021 were the circumstances surrounding historical bank accounts in the organisation. Ultimately, we were most grateful to the audit and risk committee for their assistance in reporting on the matter and their report speaks for itself on the actions required.”

Acknowledging that Cork’s Munster SFC final defeat to Kerry “showed the significant ground to be made up”, O’Donovan thanked outgoing football manager Ronan McCarthy for his efforts but did make the point that last January’s infamous training session in Youghal should have not have happened. McCarthy received a suspension while Cork lost a home national league game.

“One issue which caused heated discussion nationally was the events at Redbarn on Youghal beach in January,” O’Donovan wrote.

“While intentions may have been good and rules may have been misunderstood by the organisers, the gathering simply should not have happened. Hence, the board’s acceptance of the relevant penalty.”

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