Wembley takes pounds 7.9m leap into the black
Friday 04 September 1998
Wembley boosted profits from its Arena after a poor 1997 by extending the number of "event days" from 58 to 75 from January to July. No less than 21 of these featured Flatley's high-kicking Irish dance musical.
Lord of the Dance helped boost profits at the Arena and the Stadium by 17.6 per cent to pounds 7.9m, while profits in some other parts of the business stood still. The impact of hospitality packages on World Cup ticket sales saw earnings at Keith Prowse, its ticket agency division, fall from pounds 0.8m to pounds 0.3m.
Wembley is in the midst of a giant restructuring package which includes the sale of Wembley Stadium to the English National Stadium Trust, a body set up especially to redevelop the Stadium.
Wembley is concentrating more on its greyhound tracks and gaming business. A video-based lottery gaming machine has proved popular at its track venues in Rhode Island, in the United States, where profits rose 10.7 per cent.
Claes Hultman, chairman of Wembley, said: "The pro-posed sale of Wembley provides a tremendous opportunity to develop and refocus the Wembley group. The conclusion of the sale will finally allow us to exploit fully the remaining untapped potential within the business."
Wembley has gone ahead with big changes in management after a difficult year in 1997. Alan Coppin, group chief executive, will leave the group by the end of September, to be replaced by Nigel Potter, group finance director and the deputy chief executive since May.
Wembley slipped into loss in 1997, largely because of the impact of a pounds 15.5m award made against a United States subsidiary. The group is still locked in negotiations to try to reduce the loss.
Despite the rise in profits against last year, earnings per share in the first half actually decreased by 10 per cent. Tax payments, heavily offset in 1997 by bringing forward earlier losses in the US, rose sharply. The shares rose 6.5p to 325p.
The group said the World Cup had hit the UK hospitality industry hard. Together with the recession in Asia, it severely reduced the sale of hospitality packages at Lord's, St Andrews and Wimbledon, where Keith Prowse does a large part of its business. Corporations were able to travel to France easily rather than taking their guests to annual events in the UK.
- 1 Game of Thrones season 6: Jon Snow theorists believe Ned Stark's son may have a twin sister
- 2 Artist takes LSD, draws herself over different stages of the 9-hour trip to show its effects
- 4 iPhone 6s camera: features to include 4K video camera and flash for selfies
- 5 A pint of water every day is the key to losing weight, scientists say
Miley Cyrus address Robin Thicke VMA controversy: ‘He wanted me as naked as possible, but I got the heat because I’m a woman’
Most expensive city to live in for expatriates: Luanda, Angola takes number one spot with Hong Kong and Zurich in top three
If Surrey were Syria: Social experiment shows what it's like to live under siege
Irish tourist filmed fighting with shopkeepers in Turkey says they 'messed with the wrong man'
House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal get peerages
Dresden riots: Protesters in Germany attack refugee buses shouting 'foreigners out'
France train shooting: US soldiers speak of the moment they stopped gunman and 'beat him until he was unconscious'
Labour leadership: Jeremy Corbyn accused of 'deluding' young supporters with 'claptrap'
'Women only' train carriages: Jeremy Corbyn unveils radical move to tackle public harassment
Black holes are a passage to another universe, says Stephen Hawking
Iain Duncan Smith 'should resign over disability benefit death figures', says Jeremy Corbyn
iJobs Money & Business
£25000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: From modest beginnings the comp...
£35000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: From modest beginnings the comp...
£15000 - £65000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...
£18000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...