It’s pretty rare these days to get a rugby league story in the Australian Financial Review, but the Roosters managed to do so today. And it’s all to do with merchandising.
Defending NRL champions the Sydney Roosters received a $1.2 million boost in merchandise sales from winning the 2013 grand final, according to their financial results.
The results, recently published with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission, show the Roosters made a small $1976 profit in the 2013 season from revenue of about $20.6 million.
Merchandise income was slightly less than $2 million, compared with about $730,000 in the previous year.
The Roosters, who boast some of the most significant corporate backing in the competition, beat Manly in last year’s grand final 26-18.
Increasing sponsorship revenue and a higher grant from the NRL allowed the Roosters to cuts the annual grant they receive from their leagues club to $973,000, compared with about $3.7 million in 2012.
It’s pretty easy to see why.
Looking around the stadium at the World Club Challenge on Saturday, the eyes were greeted with more Roosters Jerseys with “13” on the back than could possibly be counted; not to mention the hoodies with the old school Easts Rooster logo, “Premiers” tees, trucker hats and much more.
Sambo Mac reported on game day that:
And with 31K-plus tickets sold for the World Club Challenge — which MUST have exceeded initial expectations — The Roosters are well ahead of the curve to further cut the grant they get from the leagues club in 2014 as they look to potentially post a profit this year.
Ted Helliar noted after the win last year that the club still ran at a loss, and in a discussion with 26 Rounds on memberships earlier this year said the price rise for Bronze memberships (From $99 to $149) was critical to the move the club towards a sustainable financial model.
Well, they look to be well on their way to achieving that this season, and the merchandise bump can only serve to have helped the process.