Rihanna, Robbie boost Aviva profits

The staging of concerts by Rihanna and Robbie Williams at the Aviva Stadium last year contributed to the firm operating the stadium recording an operating profit of €4.55m.

Fresh accounts for New Stadium Ltd show that the firm recorded the profit before non-cash depreciation and amortisation.

The directors’ report section of the accounts states that last year, almost 750,000 ‘customers’ attended 19 sporting and non-sporting events at the stadium. That marked a 50,000 increase on the 700,000 that paid to see events in 2012.

Last year, sporting events included the Heineken Cup Final in May along with five Ireland international rugby fixtures, including three autumn international matches.

Football fixtures included the Republic’s home qualifiers for the 2014 World Cup and friendlies along with the Dublin Decider between Liverpool and Celtic.

In addition, Robbie Williams, Rihanna and Roger Waters staged concerts at the venue.

The stadium has held no concerts this year and was at one stage mooted as an alternative to the failed Garth Brooks concerts at Croke Park.

According to the directors’ report: “The stadium tours business operated very satisfactorily in 2013 and a number of initiatives have been introduced to help with the development of this business.”

It states that “further improvements were made in reducing year-on-year costs and maximising revenue opportunities, both of which again have resulted in a satisfactory financial position at year end”.

Last year’s operating profit was down, marginally, on the €4.97m generated in 2012. During the year, €750,000 was recognised as an expense in respect of a lease agreement with the IRFU for the rent of the stadium land. Interest costs, totalling €1m, contributed to a pre-tax loss of €2.65m and this followed a pre-tax loss of €2.29m the previous year. The firm’s shareholder funds stood at €119m that included cash of €2.49m.


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