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Chairman’s Email 25/1

gemkayem

Active Member
I assume most of you will receive this email, but wanted to add it here too - if there’s a better place to discuss feel free to move/delete.


Dear Mariners Community,
Happy New Year. I hope 2023 is off to a great start for you all.

I’m sure that, like me, you are excited and proud of the team’s current position on the ladder, and the attractive brand of attacking football we are playing with the youngest roster in the league (many home-grown academy players). I can assure you this is driven by the hard work put in by Nick Montgomery, Sergio Raimundo and all their staff, and that none of this is by chance.

A major commitment of mine for 2023 is to be even more open & honest with you, the Mariners community, on everything about the club. As part of this commitment to transparency, I plan to communicate directly with you all from time to time on key issues, including whenever it becomes necessary to ‘set the record straight’, and also when I need your help. This message falls into both categories.

It is very easy for us all to gauge the ‘health’ of the club from a pure football perspective, simply by looking at how well we are playing and the results we are achieving on the field. We are a very healthy club through this lens, despite having the lowest budget. The Mariners’ financial health though is much harder for fans to gauge, and candidly, there are some misconceptions circulating that I think are important to clarify. So here are some key facts:

To my knowledge, the Mariners have never made a financial year profit. The club has finished every financial year at a loss, since its inception.

For the 2022/23 financial year, based on our latest forecasts, we expect to lose over $2,000,000. This is the absolute, bottom-line figure including income from player transfers, and even achieving this result is dependent upon the club meeting some targets that frankly aren’t certain. This $2,000,000+ will be paid by myself personally, driven from my desire to secure the long term future of the Mariners here on the Central Coast and my passion for Australian Football – this can’t be achieved without everyone’s support.


Asset-wise, the Mariners football club does not own any land, buildings, property or facilities. Although they have our logo and signage, the club’s head office, training grounds and facilities are all leased, and we pay rent to third parties to use and occupy them. We are, however, grateful to Mike Charlesworth for providing the club a concessional rent rate on the training ground at Tuggerah.

I’m sharing this information for two main reasons. Firstly, to clear up the misbelief held by some in our community that the Mariners are ‘asset rich’, which is simply not the case. Secondly, and more importantly, to provide you with honest context to underpin the second half of this communication: me asking you for your help.


We are working on some promising initiatives at the club right now to hopefully improve its economics, including new partnerships and passive income ventures. I’m optimistic that most of these will succeed. However, alone, they will not solve the problem; that will only happen with your support, particularly in the following 3 areas:

Fill the Stadium: Our major goal at the club is to have at least 8,000 proud, loud & passionate Mariners fans at every home game. This must be achieved within the next 2 seasons for the future stability of the club. To those of you who already come to home games, sincerely, thank you for your support. To everyone in our community though, my ask is this: please encourage everyone you know to come to matches. Friends, family, colleagues, customers, neighbours, randoms in the street, anyone and everyone. The best way to grow our game attendance is through your word of mouth. We recently had 6,914 people at our game against Adelaide, if every attendee convinced just one person to come with them, we would be back to our ‘heyday’ crowds of over 12,000 people. Please bring your friends and family to the games, we really would like all ‘coasties’ to be part of the game day euphoria!

Grow the Family: In the coming weeks, we’ll be announcing a revamp to our existing membership structure, to pave the way for more supporters to join the Mariners family, particularly non-attending Mariners fans. Whilst CCM is undoubtedly a Central Coast team, you don’t have to live on the coast to love and support our club. Over the next 3 years we hope to build a membership base of over 10,000 non-attendee supporters, each paying a mere $3 per month. Individually, these financial contributions will be small, but collectively, they have the potential to be huge for our club. More details will follow soon, but my plea for your help in this space is simple: encourage everyone you know to join the Mariners family. If you can’t get them to games, get them to enjoy in the Mariners magic from home.

Drive Business Partnerships: There are approximately 25,000 businesses operating on the Central Coast, across a wide range of industries. Some of you will own these businesses, or be employed by them, or be customers of them. My third plea is to ask that you help us garner further support from the business community. If you own a business and you’re capable of supporting our great club, please click here. If you work for a local business, or are a frequent customer of one, please encourage the business to get on board and feel free to share this email with them. A business doesn’t have to be huge or spend massive dollars to be involved. We have sponsorship options for as little as $2500 which give the business great value in return (whether in advertising or hospitality, or both). Candidly, every cent helps.

I know what it’s like to get asked for help and I know it can be fatiguing. However, I’m hopeful that this open & honest request will show you why it’s needed, and also show how you can support us non-financially too, by spreading the word and encouraging others to join & support the Mariners community.

The Mariners are the only national sporting team on the Central Coast, and I hope you agree it is essential that it lives on in a sustainable manner. Our recent on-field success and incredible player development stories are proof that the club is poised for an exciting future. If we work together, I’m confident we can achieve the extraordinary, stabilize the financial position of the club, and continue to compete to bring home the Champions Trophy.


Thank you for reading this and for your continued support. I look forward to seeing you at our next home game.

Yours faithfully,

Rich Peil
Chair - Central Coast Mariners FC
 

gemkayem

Active Member
Appreciate the honesty but doesnt make me feel great about our long term stability.
I get what you mean, but when you see the size of the hole that victory is in maybe $2m isn’t that bad.


I have a non ticketed membership and I thought $35 was way too cheap for it, would have happily paid $50, as that’s on par with my nrl club membership. But $3-5 a month to support the club if you can’t make games is pretty fair imo.

I think the crowds are slowly slowly trending in the right direction. I think the early arvo (5-5.30pm) games hurt us too because people don’t want to pay to sit in the heat looking into the sun (I know I don’t) - but that’s another can of worms too.
 

LG__

Well-Known Member
I’m a little intrigued, if we are apparently set to lose around $2 million, one would believe other clubs with much larger operating costs and budgets are losing a gigantic amount more, I mean take MacArthur and Western United for example, if we are losing $2 million how much are they losing and who is fronting that cost ?
 

gemkayem

Active Member
I’m a little intrigued, if we are apparently set to lose around $2 million, one would believe other clubs with much larger operating costs and budgets are losing a gigantic amount more, I mean take MacArthur and Western United for example, if we are losing $2 million how much are they losing and who is fronting that cost ?
In the ad for the Western United doco on paramount they mention a figure of $4.5m, but I don’t know if that was potential loss or potential revenue! Have a feeling it’s loss though
 

rbakersmith

Well-Known Member
Frankly the fact that we are renting anything off Charlesworth at all is ridiculous.

He would never have got planning without it being connected to the club and that he structured it to screw us is despicable.
I think the ownership structure (where Mariners FC Developments owned most, if not all of the club) went back to the days of Peter Turnbull and Lyall Gorman
 

Rising Sun

Well-Known Member
My question for Richard is (and perhaps any accountants on here can comment), are we talking about a $2m gap between revenue and costs?

Or is he talking about an accounting loss where there some extraordinary one-offs in there? Or
sales of assets are having a negative impact? E.g. if Garang had been valued at $2m in the previous accounts (and it might make sense that MC had maximum valuations of his assets if he was looking to sell the club) and then we sold him for $500k, does that reflect as a $1.5m loss in the books?
 

marinermick

Well-Known Member
My question for Richard is (and perhaps any accountants on here can comment), are we talking about a $2m gap between revenue and costs?

Or is he talking about an accounting loss where there some extraordinary one-offs in there? Or
sales of assets are having a negative impact? E.g. if Garang had been valued at $2m in the previous accounts (and it might make sense that MC had maximum valuations of his assets if he was looking to sell the club) and then we sold him for $500k, does that reflect as a $1.5m loss in the books?

It’s a very pertinent question if it includes the transfers.
 

pjennings

Well-Known Member
I actually like the candour. I don't think Richard is saying anything new here. But it does come across as dismal. It may be that while this year's books may look bad that a sell-on clauses, performance clauses for Kye and Garang may make for better future years.

The 8000 attendance is one of his KPIs (that he set) to be met by his third season. Currently we are sitting about 6600 for this season. To increase that by year 3 will mean an increase of 20-25% year on year. If the team continues to perform that may help with some of that, double headers with the NPL may add a some numbers as would ALW double headers.
 

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