Cricket Australia has turned around a $50m loss into an $8m profit in just one year, partly thanks to the new $1.1 billion six year TV deal with Fox Sports.
A new five-year strategy has brought critical milestones for the sport after 12 months, the Cricket AGM heard today as the annual report was published.
The 2017-18 financial year resulted in an operating surplus of $8.3 million compared with an operating deficit of $50.8 million last financial year, helped by growth in participation and attendance
The new broadcast deal has allowed CA to allocate $35 million over the next three years to grow and support community cricket, building from the foundations laid over the last 12 months.
The 2017-18 National Cricket Census showed 1,558,821 Australians engaged in cricket competitions or programs - an increase of nine percent from the previous year.
Thirty percent of cricket’s participants are now female, whilst six in every 10 new participants are female, one of the highest year-on-year participation growth figures CA has experienced.
More than 2.3 million people attended cricket during the 2017-18 summer, witnessing both men’s and women’s ashes secured, surpassing the record of 1.8 million set in 2016-17.
Cricket Australia Chairman David Peever hailed the results and also paid tribute to James Sutherland who has quit as CA Chief Executive.
“Overall, the past year has heralded another year of strong financial performance for Australian cricket, and in April we were pleased to announce a new six-year broadcast rights agreement with the Seven Network and Fox Sports," said Peever.
“This strong financial position has enabled CA to commit record levels of investment in community cricket, highlighted by our recent announcement of $35 million into grassroots cricket over the next three years.
“It is critical that we continue to invest in the grassroots of our game to support cricket’s expanding participant base growth, and that is exactly what this $35 million investment will do."
He added: "I’d like to thank James for his service, and take this opportunity to make a few reflections on what has been an outstanding tenure as CEO over more than 17 years.
“So much in world cricket and Australian cricket has changed during this time, but due to his stewardship Australian cricket is in a great position to continue to succeed over the next 20 years.
"James leaves a strong foundation to meet the future demands of our game, and his achievements do not go unrecognised.