Ascot records loss of £ 12.8 million in 2021 due to impact of Covid-19 pandemic | Horse Racing News

Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos)

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Ascot had predicted deepening losses in 2021 due to the Covid-19 impact

Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos)

By Bill Barber, Industry editor

Losses deepened at Ascot in 2021 due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic according to the latest set of financial results released by the racecourse.

Ascot made a pre-tax loss of £ 12.8 million last year, down from a loss of £ 200,000 in 2020. A difficult year had been predicted due to the Covid restrictions in place for part of the year and the lack of pandemic insurance available to mitigate lost income.

Without insurance cover, furlough and business rates relief, Ascot would have suffered a pre-tax loss of more than £ 31m in 2020.

Turnover rose by 113 per cent to £ 46.9m as crowds were gradually able to return to the racecourse, but this was more than 51 per cent lower than the 2019 level.

Six racedays were held behind closed doors, while limited crowds were allowed to Royal Ascot and the Summer Mile meeting in July after which restrictions were lifted.

However, Ascot’s debt position remained stable, with gross debt at the end of the year standing at £ 56.4m, compared to £ 59.4m in 2020. Net debt stood at £ 25.4m, up from £ 23.6m. A standby loan facility of £ 20m, which is available until 2023 and arranged through the government’s coronavirus large business interruption loan scheme (CLBILS), remains undrawn.

Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos)

“title =” Guy Henderson, chief executive of Ascot racecourse, stands in the paddock by the statue of YeatsAscot 4.6.15 Pic: Edward Whitaker “class =” js-imageLoader “data-at-xn =” https: // www. rp-assets.com/images/news/2017/04/03/19392-medium.jpeg “data-br-n =” https://www.rp-assets.com/images/news/2017/04/03 /19392-medium.jpeg “data-br-m =” https://www.rp-assets.com/images/news/2017/04/03/19392-large.jpeg “data-br-w =” https : //www.rp-assets.com/images/news/2017/04/03/19392-large.jpeg “data-br-xw =” https://www.rp-assets.com/images/news/ 2017/04/03/19392-large.jpeg “onclick =” return false; “>

Guy Henderson, chief executive of Ascot racecourse, stands in the paddock by the statue of YeatsAscot 4.6.15 Pic: Edward Whitaker

Ascot chief executive Guy Henderson

Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos)

Guy Henderson, who is stepping down after seven years as Ascot chief executive this month, said: “The 2021 financial year was challenging for obvious reasons and so we are particularly pleased to have got through the pandemic with reduced debt and without needing to activate the standby government CLBILS loan facility. This has provided the business with a solid platform from which to invest in re-building out of it.

“I wish to thank and pay particular tribute to all our staff and commercial partners for their loyalty and dedication throughout the pandemic. This enabled us to stage Royal Ascot 2020 as the first major national sporting event behind closed doors and, on less than a month’s notice, to deliver Royal Ascot 2021 as part of the government’s Events Research Program. “

Henderson said Ascot had invested significantly in improving customer experience at this year’s royal meeting, with a planned reduction in attendance to nearly 275,000, down from the usual 300,000.

“We look forward to the rest of year with excitement,” he added.


Read more:

Bookmakers to donate £ 1.2 million to charity from Britannia Stakes profits

Ascot hoping to build on ‘pleasing’ number of overseas raiders at royal meeting



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FIRST PUBLISHED 11:00 AM, JUN 23 2022

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