Pandemic insurance leads to £40.5m operating profit for AELTC

The All England Lawn Tennis Club (AELTC), organiser of the Wimbledon Championships, reported an operating profit of £40.5m (€46.9m/$56.4m) for the financial year ending July 31, 2020, in large part down to the insurance policy it had in place that covered the cancellation of last year’s edition of the grand slam tournament.

The AELTC reported turnover of just £3.81m for the year, compared to £292m in 2019. However, the £40.5m operating profit figure includes other income received from the insurance policy totalling £174m. Of this £174m, £17m has been deferred to the current financial year, with a final claim amount yet to be agreed with the insurers.

The policy means that despite the cancellation of Wimbledon last year and other pandemic-related difficulties, the AELTC’s operating profit only dropped to £40.5m from £50.1m the previous year.

As of July 31, 2020, the company’s cash balance was £48.9m, compared to £45.1m in 2019. Its net assets stood at £20.1m, up from £16.2m in 2019.

Last year marked the first time since World War Two that Wimbledon was cancelled, with the insurance policy meaning that the AELTC was one of the few sports organisations to be protected against the specific financial threat posed by a global pandemic such as COVID-19.

This year’s Wimbledon is due to go ahead as planned from June 28 to July 11, although attendance plans are yet to be finalised. The AELTC said in February that it was focusing on a “reduced capacity” event and the roadmap for reopening in England could mean that large-scale crowds are possible at the tournament.

Last week, plans were revealed for a new 8,000-seat show court at Wimbledon as part of the expansion of the facility. The AELTC wants to build the arena on land it purchased from Wimbledon Park Golf Club in 2018 for £65m, and it is hoped the court will be ready by 2030.

Image: Ungry Young Man/CC BY 2.0/Edited for size