WINNIPEG — The Winnipeg Football Club released its 2017 annual report and announced an overall operating profit of $5.1 million – an increase of $2.3 million from 2016 – the team announced on Thursday.
“We are pleased with these very strong 2017 financial results,” said Winnipeg Football Club President & CEO, Wade Miller. “These results are a testament to the strong support from our fans, season ticket members, and corporate partners. Our team should be proud of our success in 2017.” Revenue reached a total of $32.5 million in 2017 (an increase of $2.9 million over 2016), and is owed primarily to increased attendance at Investors Group Field in 2017. The Club hosted a home playoff game, leading to increases in game revenue and WFC revenue and also hosted three major non-football events at Investors Group Field.
Total game revenue increased by $1.6 million (14%) as average attendance for the pre-season and regular season increased from an average of 25,935 fans in 2016 to over 27,400 in 2017, an increase of 6%. Additionally, the Club experienced growth in corporate partnerships, retail sales, and food and beverage revenue thanks to the strong local support of our Bomber fans. In addition, the hosting of non-football events at Investors Group Field are important contributors to the Club’s overall financial performance, while inviting a broader fan base to our stadium. “Investors Group Field has welcomed more than just football fans since its opening, with concerts, soccer, and the Manitoba Marathon finish line inviting a much broader group of Winnipegers into our beautiful facility. These non-football events have been important in the Club’s financial performance as well,” said Miller.
Operating expenses totalled $27.4 million, an increase of just $700,000 or 2.4% over 2016. While the Club continues to invest in its on-field product, overall football operations expenses remained level in 2017 due to savings in many areas as a result of having a healthy, winning football team.
The Club alone continues to fund the public transportation program for transit and park and ride services to and from Investors Group Field. The Club has operated the public transportation program since 2013 and has paid for all expenditures related to the program, totalling over $3.8 million. In 2017, Triple B Stadium Inc. formally acknowledged their legal obligation to fund a portion of the public transportation program, retroactive to 2013 and onward. The Club will continue its efforts to recover the payments due from Triple B.
The Club recorded a payment to Triple B of $3.5 million, the Club’s fourth annual scheduled excess cash payment as required by the Club’s Management Agreement with Triple B. This was in addition to paying the City of Winnipeg $1.3 million, which was related to an earlier Winnipeg Enterprises Corporation debt that was assigned to the Club by the City of Winnipeg in 2005