Athletics SA make surplus despite SABC financial fiasco

Athletes during the 2019 Old Mutual Two Oceans Half Marathon in Cape Town. South African road runners are left with no means to generate income due to the lockdown.
Athletes during the 2019 Old Mutual Two Oceans Half Marathon in Cape Town. South African road runners are left with no means to generate income due to the lockdown.
Image: ImageSA/Gallo Images

Athletics SA (ASA) saw income drop by more than R11.5-million last year‚ largely because of SABC’s money woes‚ but the federation still boasted an operating surplus of R547‚000.

The sports body’s latest audited financial statements for the year ending December 31 2019‚ which are to be discussed at a special general meeting next month‚ showed an accumulated reserve of just more than R8m when the clock ticked over into 2020.

While ASA would have faced many pressures this year because of Covid-19 and lockdown‚ the document shows they survived other problems in 2019.

Total earnings slipped from R43.7m in 2018 to 32.1m last year. Income from SABC‚ one of the traditional staples of ASA revenue‚ dropped to R3.3m in 2019 from just more than R14m the year before.

The cash-strapped broadcaster didn’t televise the Two Oceans Marathon nor the national track and field championships‚ coming on board only shortly before the Comrades Marathon.

ASA received R6.64m from membership income‚ up from R4.8m in 2018‚ but it’s Lotto sponsorship went down slightly to R8.8m from R9.1m.

Sponsorship income dropped to R3m from R4.8m.

The collapse of the Liquid Telecom sponsorship deal might have been a factor.

ASA received R8.8m from government‚ R2m of which was a regular annual grant and the rest what was referred to as “special fund”.

ASA also cut expenses by more than R11m‚ reducing them from R42.8m to R31.5m. The sports body slashed nearly R6m off legal expenses and more than R5m off event costs.

Salaries went up from R4.1m to R4.6m. Local travel dropped from R1.78m to R1.36m‚ but accommodation and meals rose slightly from R462‚992 to R501‚615.

The SGM will be held on a virtual platform on December 12.​