Business Irish

Saturday 1 October 2016

'Penny Dreadful' helps Ardmore to €1.3m profit

Gordon Deegan

Published 29/07/2016 | 02:30

Penny Dreadful
Penny Dreadful

Shooting hit series 'Penny Dreadful' contributed to the company that operates Ardmore Studios making a profit of €1.34m last year.

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New accounts filed by Ardmore Studios Ltd with the Companies Office show it enjoyed another strong year, continuing its recovery from a loss-making position in 2012 and 2011.

The accounts show that the firm had accumulated profits of €865,578 at the end of December last compared to an accumulated loss of €484,903 at the end of December 2014.

The profits last year follows the studios recording profits of €1.35m in 2014 and profits of €340,000 in 2013.

The studio recorded losses of €851,873 in 2012 and €987,622 in 2011.

The Co Wicklow film studio, in which former U2 manager Paul McGuinness and accountant Ossie Kilkenny are shareholders, saw its cash pile last year increase from €1.68m to €2.67m.

The three series of the Sky Atlantic and Showtime hit 'Penny Dreadful' have been shot at Ardmore, but the studios last month received a blow when it announced that there wouldn't be another season of the drama.

Others credits for Ardmore include 'The Tudors', 'Camelot', 'Moone Boy' and the critically acclaimed movie 'Frank'. Numbers directly employed by Ardmore last year fell from 13 to 12 with staff costs increasing marginally from €690,792 to €696,345.

The profit last year takes account of non-cash depreciation costs of €234,234. Shareholder funds last year rose from €849,025 to €2.19m.

Last year, Ardmore opened its 'Ardmore Film Factory', an additional production facility located in Bray. It contains over 30,000 sq ft of additional studio space and 11,000 sq ft of office space, opening up opportunities for productions of all sizes.

Last year, the ceo of Ardmore Studios, Siún Ní Raghallaigh, told the Government that the cap on film tax relief would need to be increased to at least €100m to lure Hollywood blockbusters to Ireland.

The chief executive wrote to the Minister for Arts and Heritage Heather Humphreys after hearing that the cap would be raised from €50m to about €70m, claiming this would be "inadequate". The €70m tax-free cap came into effect earlier this year.

The last big-budget movies made here were 'Braveheart' and 'Saving Private Ryan' in the 1990s.

Ardmore opened in 1958 and has also been involved in a number of major productions. The value of the firm's fixed assets increased to €1.8m last year.

Irish Independent

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