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AFL releases 2015 financial details

On behalf of the AFL Commission, the AFL has today lodged the 2015 Financial Accounts with ASIC and will send them to the 18 Club Presidents in preparation for the Annual General Meeting to be held on Thursday March 17, 2016.

AFL Commission Chairman Mike Fitzpatrick today said that the 2015 financial year had been one of increased revenue, good attendances, very strong club membership growth, steady ratings and strong digital growth.

“The Commission and the Clubs can feel proud of the state of the game during the last 12 months,” Mr Fitzpatrick said. 

“During our 2015 financial year, the code has grown its revenue, spectacularly increased our digital footprint, grown our corporate partnerships and club memberships and held strong ground with our attendances and ratings. 

“As well as this, the AFL team have delivered an outstanding broadcast rights agreement, upon which we can build a strong future as Australia’s number one game,” Mr Fitzpatrick said.

Financial result

In 2015, AFL revenue increased by $33.3 million to $506.0 million while our operating surplus before grants and distributions was $337.8 million.

Other key financial highlights included: 

  • Revenue increased by $33.3 million to $506.0 million
  • Expenditure increased by $12.7 million to $168.0 million primarily due to revenue related increases
  • The operating surplus before grants and distributions increased by six per cent to $337.8 million
  • The AFL provided $245.2 million to AFL clubs compared to $218.3 million in 2014
  • The AFL allocated $39.4 million of game development grants in 2015
  • Before grants and distributions, the operating surplus was $337.8 million
  • After grants and distributions, the AFL’s net profit decreased by $10.0 million in 2015 to $2.5 million which was in line with the 2015 budget

“The AFL Commission and Executive team have delivered the future broadcast rights agreement, and begun the process of building a new investment model, to ensure we make decisions for the next 20 years, not just for the next six,” Mr Fitzpatrick said. 

In 2015, Mr Fitzpatrick said that the game had also implemented the new competitive balance policies, including the soft cap and revenue sharing, to further improve financial management and competitiveness across the 18 clubs. 

Key AFL metrics:

  • 15 years of membership growth, with more than 150,000 new members in 2015
  • AFL ratings held despite flat or declining ratings for other TV shows on free to air and Foxtel
  • Aggregate TV audience per round on Seven and Fox Footy of 4.466 million viewers
  • 104 million aggregate monthly unique visitors to the AFL digital platforms during the 2015 season, ensuring AFL Media remains the number one digital sports property in Australia, across desktop, smartphone and tablet
  • 1.26 million participants across schools and social football, community and Auskick
  • Successful new Grand Final precinct and parade
  • Total attendances of 6,870,586 for the Premiership season

“During this very demanding year, the AFL also began to lay the foundations for the most dramatic change to our game in its 150 years – the establishment of a national women’s league. We also reviewed second tier and community football and have grounded our multicultural and indigenous growth strategy in the Next Generation Academies,” Mr Fitzpatrick said. 

As part of the financial figures, the Commission released the details of the executive packages for 2015. 

The Executive Director (AFL CEO) package was $1.7 million in 2015.

Mr. Fitzpatrick said the AFL, through the work of the AFL Executive and the Commission, had achieved impressive results in each of its key indicators on the health of the game.

“The game is in very good shape, and we go into the 2016 season with a strong financial outlook, 18 competitive clubs, passionate members and exciting new projects that will build our future,” Mr Fitzpatrick said.