Australia / Press Releases
IBISWorld explores the AFL clubs kicking financial goals 2018
by Media Team
Sep 25 2018

AFL Grand Final 2018 – IBISWorld explores the clubs kicking financial goals

West Coast tops the profit ladder and Collingwood takes home the revenue trophy

 

West Coast Eagles and Collingwood Magpies are set to fight it out for the 2018 AFL Grand Final this Saturday, after finishing the home and away season in second and third place respectively.

In the lead up to the decider, Australia’s largest industry research company, IBISWorld, investigated the financial performance of each club and how they compared against the rest of the clubs in the competition this year.

Collingwood tops the revenue ladder

“Not surprisingly, Collingwood and West Coast are among the top performers when it comes to revenue generated within the competition. Collingwood topped the ladder at $77.7 million (up 9% from 2016), while West Coast ranked third with annual revenue of $71.1 million (up 12% from 2016),” said IBISWorld Senior Industry Analyst Tommy Wu. 

The other clubs that finished in the top four of the home and away season, Hawthorn and Richmond, also placed in the top five in terms of revenue, with Richmond recording surging growth after clinching their first premiership in 37 years.

“While the on-field performances and match day attendances of these clubs contribute to their strong financial performance, hospitality and gaming also represent significant revenue streams for some clubs,” said Mr. Wu. 

Hawthorn topped the table in terms of pokies machines takings in 2017-18, with Collingwood coming in at third. However, Collingwood has announced it will be selling its gaming operations next month, following a league-wide trend of AFL clubs cutting ties with their gaming businesses. AFL clubs have shifted away from pokies and gaming as they become more financially viable, in an effort to build positive and family-friendly brands that increase engagement and participation at all levels.

2017 AFL Club Revenue Ladder:

Rank

Club

Revenue (000)

% Change

1

Collingwood

$                  77,737

9%

2

Hawthorn

$                  71,584

1%

3

West Coast

$                  71,082

12%

4

Essendon

$                  65,166

22%

5

Richmond

$                  65,164

37%

West Coast tops the profit ladder

In contrast, West Coast and Collingwood were on opposite ends of the ladder when measured by profitability.

“Collingwood has put a lot of money back into their on-field operations, as their rising football and team expenses in the current year demonstrate. However, the sale of the Collingwood’s gaming operations is expected to significantly boost its profits during the next financial year,” said Mr. Wu.

2017 AFL Club Profit Ladder:

Rank

Club

Profit (000)

1

West Coast

$  12,414

2

St Kilda

$    5,267

3

Essendon

$    5,054

4

Hawthorn

$    4,764

5

Richmond

$    3,063

6

Fremantle

$    2,490

7

Western Bulldogs

$    1,643

8

Melbourne

$    1,363

9

Carlton

$        679

10

Adelaide

$        649

11

North Melbourne

$        243

12

Sydney Swans

$        105

13

Port Adelaide

$          29

14

Gold Coast Suns

$          19

15

Geelong

-$       446

16

GWS Giants

-$       523

17

Brisbane Lions

-$    2,262

18

Collingwood

-$    2,733

 

A common theme among the clubs at the top of the revenue ladder is their popularity and significant amount of membership revenue.

“The top five clubs are expected to dominate the revenue ladder for the rest of 2018. Richmond, which broke the 100,000 membership mark in late July, up from around 73,000 at the same time last year, is expected to perform especially well,” said Mr. Wu.

Richmond has also managed to bolster its revenue through Aligned Leisure, a health, fitness and leisure business that has won several tenders to manage facilities across Mildura and Albury-Wodonga.

IBISWorld analysts believe that in order for AFL clubs to increase their profitability in the future, they will increasingly need to seek other sources of revenue as they shift away from gaming machines.

 

IBISWorld Industry Reports used to develop this release:

 

For more information, to obtain industry reports or to speak with an analyst please contact:
McKenna Moroz 
IBISWorld Media Relations Representatives – Anne Wild & Associates Pty Ltd
Tel: (02) 9440 0414
Mobile: 0431 781 445
Email: mmoroz@awassociates.com.au