It is an opportune time to update our Members with the financial position of the Club, following the restrictions on the Club’s activities due to Covid-19. Like many other Clubs, hotels, and restaurants, we were forced to cease trading from 23 March 2020. These restrictions along with social distancing restrictions affected all of our staff, including both the Licensed Club and Football operations.
From a financial perspective, the Club was trading well at that time and ahead of budget in the 5-month period to the end of March 2020. Some of the initiatives, particularly with changes in staff rostering, and close control over expenses was working well and we were optimistic that trend would continue as football was about to commence for the 2020 season.
Since 23 March 2020 until late June, there was no trading and no income from normal bar and bistro sales or gaming. When we could recommence trading, we did so conservatively with restricted hours of operations. The traditional funding from SANFL to the Clubs was also unavailable as they had their own challenges with no weekly AFL games being played at Adelaide Oval. However, the SANFL executive worked tirelessly on behalf of all Clubs to ensure the viability of each Club who were unable to generate their usual revenue from business operations. The West Adelaide Football Club has received great support and we have also maximised the funding support through both the JobKeeper program and other initiatives announced by the Federal Government.
It is pleasing the Licensed Club is almost back to normal trading albeit with social distancing measures in place. July is a particularly important month for the Club as we will get to review patronage and analyse all parts of the business now that we are trading again. At this stage, we are pleased but still cautious.
As a Board member, I could not be prouder of the management team, the staff, the coaches, and the players for their unwavering commitment in very trying times. Staff continued to come to work and undertook different activities to help in preparation of the 2020 football season and the eventual re-opening of the licensed premises and gaming room. The players have worked very hard on their fitness in readiness for the revised season thus ensuring the Bloods remain a very competitive side in all levels.
Financially, we are currently in a good position and again, I would like to thank Ben and his staff for their efforts in managing the Club in these unprecedented times. If you have the opportunity, please support the teams and enjoy the hospitality of the Licensed Club over the remainder of the SANFL season.