Essendon have bounced back from the dark days of the supplements scandal to record a massive $5 million profit in 2017, as reported by Fairfax Media in August.
The Bombers generated $65.2 million in revenue for the year as they welcomed most of their best players back from the season-long ban they served in 2016 when the Court of Arbitration suspended them for their part in the ill-fated 2012 supplements scandal.
The huge profit tops off an outstanding season for the club, which made the finals, watched No.1 draft pick Andy McGrath win the AFL’s Rising Star award and recruited Jake Stringer, Adam Saad and Devon Smith during trade period.
The club set a new membership record of 67,768 and received increased backing from commercial sponsors as more than one million people attended Essendon games in 2017.
Essendon CEO Xavier Campbell said the Bombers’ plan was on track as they attempted to regain ground that was lost during the disastrous period between 2013-16 when the club was subject to investigation and controversy in relation to their 2012 supplements program.
“This has been a year of progress from both a football and financial perspective,” Campbell said.
“On and off the field, the competition is more ruthless and competitive than ever, and we know we have to keep working harder and smarter and invest in the right areas of our club.”
The Bombers play four Friday night games in 2018 and retain the marquee Anzac Day slot as they aim to improve on finishing eighth in 2017.
They also aim to further reduce debt as they finalise the club’s training centre at Tullamarine.