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Gold Coast will have chewed through $100 million by the end of next season

THE Gold Coast Suns will have chewed through a tick over $100 million in AFL money when the club’s seven-year start-up funding deal expires at the end of next season.
That’s based on the modest assumption that the club will benefit from only $16.5m in funding this year and next.
That $16.5m figure is the same amount disclosed as “grant income” for 2014 in the club’s financial report, which has been submitted to the Australian Securities and Investments Commission.
The $100m does not include the $10m the AFL committed to the $130m upgrade of Metricon Stadium back in 2009, which the club now operates.
The Suns — like fellow expansion side Greater Western Sydney — do not publish their financial accounts and are not forced to by the AFL, but they must submit them to ASIC.
Gold Coast Football Club Ltd was registered as a business by the AFL in 2007 with league executives Andrew Dillon, Ian Anderson and Simon Lethlean as directors.
It first fielded a team in 2009, in the TAC Cup under-18 competition.
It survived on $1 million in sponsorship revenue that year, before the real money started pouring in the following year — when the side played senior football in the VFL.
In June 2010, the league handed over control to the current business entity, GCFC Ltd, with the board led by chairman John Witheriff taking charge.
The club’s ASIC documents show grant income of $6.2m in 2010, more than doubling to $14.5m in 2011 — the club’s first season in the AFL.
The cashflow reached a peak in 2013 when the league tipped in almost $17 million — about $5m more than the average AFL annual distribution to non-expansion teams.
The Suns made a $1m profit last year and has beaten last season’s membership record, with more than 13,500 sold to date.

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