Rebranded Football Australia forecasts $7.3m loss as Covid hits game hard


Football Federation Australia insists its rebranding will not cost a cent as it prepares for a loss of $7.3m for the 2020-21 financial year. FFA will now be known as Football Australia (FA), with the name change voted in at Wednesday’s Annual General Meeting.

FA announced it had lost $1.814m in the 2019-20 financial year, with the loss of crowds due to the Covid-19 pandemic and a significant reduction in the A-League broadcast deal stripping the governing body of millions of dollars.

The net deficit for the 2019-20 financial year was $1,814,000. A year earlier, FA recorded a net surplus of $435,000. As of 30 June, FA had total assets of $44.319m and total liabilities of $39.788m, equating to net assets of $4.531m. Their net assets were $6.436m a year earlier.

Worryingly, the biggest financial hits are still to come. FA has budgeted for a drop in revenue from $106.4m in 2019-20 down to $82.7m in 2020-21.

A big proportion of that drop in revenue is a result of the renegotiated broadcast deal. FA’s broadcast deals netted $50.8m in cash last financial year, but that is budgeted to fall to $29.7m in 2020-21.

The current deal to broadcast the A-League ends next season and it remains to be seen what the next deal will look like and how much it will earn.

FA’s forecast $7.3m deficit position for the 2020-21 financial year consists of a $1.3m deficit for FA and a $6m deficit for the various leagues, including the A-League and W-League.

The significant losses from the leagues includes a $5.1m budgeted deficit relating to the hub resumption of the 2019-20 A-League season, which was postponed from the 2019-20 financial year due to Covid.

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There were some positives to come out of a difficult 2020, including the successful bid to host the 2023 Fifa Women’s World Cup, and qualification for the Tokyo Olympics in both the men’s and women’s categories.

Meanwhile, the unbundling of the A-League – which will see clubs take control of the league – could be finalised before Christmas. That could ease some of the financial strain on FA and allow individual clubs to lead the drive to attract foreign investors.



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