Applications drive CAO to profit
Record numbers applying to the Central Applications Office (CAO) last year for third-level places returned it to profit in 2016.
New figures showed that the asset-rich CAO recorded a profit last year of €164,354 following a loss of €154,027 in 2015, a positive swing of €318,381.
The swing occurred after 76,000 people applied to the CAO in 2016.
This total followed 74,499 applications made in 2015; 73,063 in 2014 and 71,151 in 2013. The firm that operates the CAO system recorded the upswing after revenues increased by more than €100,000 from €2.659m to €2.76m.
The coming days will be the busiest for the Galway-based body as it allocates third-level college places following the Leaving Cert.
Established in 1977 by the universities and the Higher Education Authority, the CAO is a private company and its profits were boosted by investment income of €52,495. At the end of last December, the CAO held €1.76m in cash, along with an extra €4m in investments.