Absence of All-Ireland hurling replay sees drop in GAA revenue
GAA revenues for 2015 were slightly down on the previous year as the absence of an All-Ireland hurling final replay for the first time in four years was factored in.
Croke Park's director of finance Tom Ryan has described the figures, released today, as "stable" after an income of €55.7m was generated, a fall of just over 500,000 euro.
For two successive years in 2013 and 2014 hurling championship revenues outstripped football revenues but that has been reversed again as football rose with an All-Ireland semi-final replay between Dublin and Mayo that was almost a sell-out last September.
But with a motion to restrict championship replays to just All-Ireland and provincial finals the 'bonus' money from a replay will be less of a consideration.
The €2.7m fall in gate receipts from €29.4m to €26.7m, largely down to the absence of a replay, was offset by a commercial performance which saw revenues rise by over €2.2m on 2014.
The average attendance at games overseen at central level was 19,000 through 2015.
Media rights generated €11.2m, up from €10.4m, as the impact of subscriptions for GAAGo were factored in.
Sponsoring revenue also soared, rising to 6.5m euro from 5.1m euro. Overall commercial revenues, which combine media and sponsorship, came in at €18.35m.
Spending on games development, which helps to fund more than 200 coaches countrywide came in at 10.3m euro, up from 9.5m euro in 2014.
The Croke Park stadium continues to generate significant return for the GAA between concerts and hospitality.
The company that runs the stadium affairs, Pairc An Chrocaigh Teoranta, was in a position to return a similar figure, 7m euro, to the GAA on the back of match rental and 11.4m euro for the hiring of corporate facilities which would include three concerts held there in 2015.
Overall gate receipts represented 48% of overall GAA income in 2015 with commercial revenue accounting for 33%.
Spending on player welfare schemes came in a 3.9m euro for 2015.