After profitable 2019, Blue Bombers brace for austerity in 2020

After profitable 2019, Blue Bombers brace for austerity in 2020

WINNIPEG — The Winnipeg Blue Bombers have reported an overall operating profit of $3.5 million for the 2019 season, but their bottom line for 2020 is looking far darker.

A rosy report for 2019 was expected after the Blue Bombers won their first championship in 29 years, beating Hamilton 33-12 to claim the Grey Cup. The operating profit is $900,000 more than the 2018 figure for the community-owned club.

The team said in a statement Wednesday that the Blue Bombers saw strong merchandise sales in November leading up to the Grey Cup, which carried over into December as the city celebrated its title.

However, with the COVID-19 pandemic expected to wipe out the 2020 season, the club says its outlook has “dramatically changed.”

“If the season were to be shortened or cancelled, the financial effects would be severe and would result in a significant net loss for the year,” the Bombers said in the statement.

The CFL is a gate-driven league without the type of rich television deal other major North American sports leagues enjoy, making it more vulnerable during a time of restrictions on mass gatherings to help control the spread of COVID-19. The league has asked the federal government for up to $150 million in assistance, with commissioner Randy Ambrosie saying that the survival of the CFL is in doubt without help.

“The club continues to monitor the situation in conjunction with the CFL and is reducing, deferring, and eliminating expenditures where possible, and at the same time exploring all possible alternate sources of revenue during these difficult times,” team president and CEO Wade Miller said in the release. “The support that our season ticket members and corporate partners have shown us throughout has been overwhelming and encouraging.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 13, 2020.

The Canadian Press

CFL

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Sylvan Lake Community Partners seeking donations

Community Partners is still open and ready to help, says Jen Baliant

Sylvan Lake RCMP lay child luring charge

David Brown, 38, of Sylvan Lake was arrested on May 26 after a complaint received on May 19

Small celebrations planned for Sylvan Lake grads during pandemic

The high school and local businesses have small events planned to honour the Class of 2020

COVID-19 recovered cases continue to rise in Alberta

69 more recoveries Tuesday, bringing the total to 6,048

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

Sylvan Lake News is firmly committed to seeing you through the changes ahead, but we need your help

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

Sylvan Lake News is firmly committed to seeing you through the changes ahead, but we need your help

If an MP heckles in a virtual House of Commons, does it make a sound?

If an MP heckles in a virtual House of Commons, does it make a sound?

How much will be enough when it comes to Canada’s COVID-19 supply?

How much will be enough when it comes to Canada’s COVID-19 supply?

Twenty-nine of Canada’s 48 national parks to reopen to day-use visitors in early June

Twenty-nine of Canada’s 48 national parks to reopen to day-use visitors in early June

Advocates push Ottawa to fix long-term problems with long-term care

Advocates push Ottawa to fix long-term problems with long-term care

COVID-19 shows need for long-term-care reform but solve crisis first, Trudeau says

COVID-19 shows need for long-term-care reform but solve crisis first, Trudeau says

Alberta premier says targeted approach needed to prevent COVID-19 resurgence

Alberta premier says targeted approach needed to prevent COVID-19 resurgence

Military has located wreckage of helicopter and remains in Mediterranean

Military has located wreckage of helicopter and remains in Mediterranean

Most Read