Sunday 4 December 2016

Riverdance firm jigs back to profit to tune of €700,000

Gordon Deegan

Published 22/05/2015 | 02:30

Next month, Riverdance will be playing at the Marquee in Cork and the Gaiety Theatre in Dublin
Next month, Riverdance will be playing at the Marquee in Cork and the Gaiety Theatre in Dublin
John McColgan and Moya Doherty. Photo: Arthur Carron

The firm behind Riverdance returned to profit last year as the production celebrated its 20th anniversary.

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Abhann Productions recorded pre-tax tax profits of €711,092 after recording pre-tax losses of €555,151 in 2013. The firm's gross profit more than doubled to €3.16m in the 12 months to the end of June last.

The show - born out of a seven-minute interval performance at the 1994 Eurovision Song Contest - has been seen by more than 23 million people over the past two decades.

The creative forces behind the entertainment phenomenon have shared a pay bonanza of over €1.63m over the past two years.

The show's creators John McColgan and Moya Doherty share a seat on the board with David Orr. Aggregate pay to directors more than doubled last year from €540,023 to €1.1m. Between 2000 and 2012, McColgan and Doherty shared directors' pay totalling €75m.

The two have been richly rewarded for their risk-taking - short of investors before the first Riverdance show was put on in February 1995, the two put their own home on the line.

The firm's revenues between 2000 and 2011 total €361m.

Last year, the business continued to flourish on the back of dates in Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Russia, Switzerland, Ireland and the UK. Next month, Riverdance will be playing at the Marquee in Cork and the Gaiety Theatre in Dublin to be followed by a tour of Canada and the US.

Irish Independent

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