Chairman’s Welcome and Address to Members

2014 Annual General Meeting

Thursday, 27 February 2014

SCG, Sydney

I would like to thank each of the members who have been able to attend today and also acknowledge all of our members, which is approaching 40,000.

In 2013, Sydney Swans Limited achieved a statutory profit of $646,745 on revenues of approximately $43 million.  This is the Club's third consecutive profit.

Other financial highlights include:

  • Revenue grew by 7% or $2.7m
  • Membership & Match Day revenue increased by 10%
  • $1million was spent upgrading our change rooms including the construction of an altitude training facility

I would again like to acknowledge the immense contribution to the Club by Richard Colless AM.  Richard completed his 20-year tenure as Chairman in December 2012.   Few, if any people have done more for this Club in its long history than Richard.

It is also fitting to thank those players who left the club's playing group during or at the conclusion of the 2013 season, either due to retirement or opportunities elsewhere.

Jude Bolton, Marty Mattner, Shane Mumford, Mitch Morton, Jesse White, Andrejs Everitt, Jed Lamb, Tony Armstrong and Alex Brown all made important contributions to the club and we wish them well in the future.  We are particularly pleased that whilst no longer playing for the Club, Marty Mattner and Jude Bolton remain officially involved in various capacities.  

2013 also saw former player, Premiership Coach and inaugural Swans Academy coach Paul Roos appointed as Senior Coach at the Melbourne Demons Football Club.  We wish Paul the very best and I am confident that Melbourne will greatly benefit from Paul’s leadership and coaching skills.

I would like to congratulate Head of Football Dean Moore, senior coach John Longmire, the entire Football Department and the senior team for making the Preliminary Final.  It was a fantastic effort in a very strong competition, especially considering the injuries we suffered during the season.  In 2013 our injury list was at its worst for 10 years.  It is also worth noting and congratulating the Reserves team, which won its first NEAFL Eastern Conference premiership.  I am confident this is a leading indicator for the future of the club overall.

The Sydney Swans Academy continues to grow and now coaches over 570 boys aged 9 - 18.  We were delighted that club legend Michael O’Loughlin accepted the position of Head Coach.  Given the paucity of players entering the AFL system from metropolitan Sydney over recent years, we are hopeful that the impact of the Academy, for the betterment of AFL as a whole, is apparent.

I would like to thank our Number One Ticket Holder in 2013, Paul McMahon for his tireless efforts and congratulate the 2014 Number One Ticket Holders, Peter and Maree Thomas.

None of what we do would be possible without the ongoing support of Principal Partner QBE and Major Partners Citi and Volkswagen. A special thank you to Citi, who are beginning their 10th season of partnership with the Club. In addition to this, I would like to take the opportunity to recognise Cellarbrations and all Premier and Associate Partners. In 2014 we introduce new partners at both the Premier and Associate level including new Premier Partner HCF and we look forward to productive, enjoyable and long term relationships with all these organisations.

Club Co-Captain Jarrad McVeigh won his second Bob Skilton Medal, which capped off a marvellous season for Jarrad as a player and leader at this club.

At the 2013 Club Champion Dinner, the club awarded Life Membership to five highly deserving men.   They are current Swans players Ted Richards and Nick Malceski as well as Richard Colless, media legend Peter ‘Grubby’ Stubbs and long-time and highly regarded coach, George Stone.  Life Membership is not awarded lightly and reflects the high regard these gentlemen are held by the club.

I would like to thank Chief Executive Andrew Ireland for his continued leadership and vision for the club.  Andrew in conjunction with CFO Tim Laing and the entire executive provide us with a first class administration team.  I already know that starting my tenure as Chairman is made so much easier with the quality of advice and support I have already received by Andrew, Tim and all of the executive team.