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Kent in profit despite season's operating loss


Kent have reported an operating loss of £595,000 for the year to October 2010.

However the club made an overall profit of £3,535,426 due to the sale of land at their St Lawrence Ground home in Canterbury.

In his report, which has been sent to members, club treasurer Simon Philip said: "Currently the club is living well beyond its means."

However, chief executive Jamie Clifford said there are still grounds for optimism with the rebuilding work.

They have spent a large part of the profits from the sale of land by starting to enlarge the dressing rooms and installing the club's first permanent floodlights, which Clifford hopes will bring in new revenue by increasing gates.

"We know there is a real appetite from the general public to watch cricket under floodlights on a summer's evening," he told BBC Radio Kent. "So we are very hopeful that will be the case.

"We have a couple of bonus fixtures and some high quality cricket.

"The Twenty20 is very exciting and the lights allow you to stage cricket a time when people want to come and watch it."

But money coming through the turnstiles was considerably down in 2010 compared to 2009.

The club announced a decrease of £243,000 on gate receipts in 2010, a drop of 36%, although members' subscriptions were up £43,000.

Last year we spent more on players' salaries than we've ever done. That shows a club committed to on-field success

Kent chief executive Jamie Clifford

Philip says this is partially down to cricket's biggest money spinner, the FPt20, clashing with football's World Cup.

"There is no doubt that the World Cup and the lack of a cricket narrative last summer, with the major Test series not starting until late July, had a huge impact," he said.

"With cricket off the back pages throughout, the low profile of the game in the nation's sporting consciousness in 2010 had a direct effect on the more casual cricket fan.

"Whilst Beckenham Twenty20 games have averaged receipts of over £60,000 in recent years, last season's game started 45 minutes after England had finished playing Slovenia, and produced gate receipts of only £26,000."

But Clifford insists that the operating loss would not have a notably detrimental effect on playing matters following Kent's relegation back to Division Two of the County Championship.

"Last year we spent more on players' salaries than we have ever done in the history of the club," he told BBC Radio Kent. "That shows a club committed to on-field success.

"The tricky thing is to make those players think that Kent is the place to develop them.

"When the players return they'll have better facilities and better dressing rooms to prepare in and they will see they're part of a very ambitious club."

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see also
Kent dismiss administration talk
17 Sep 10 |  Kent

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