Gloucestershire prepared for "challenging year" after "massively disappointing" losses

Chief executive Will Brown admitted the seven-figure deficit was greater than had been forecast and confirmed the club couldn't afford another loss on a similar scale


Gloucestershire chief executive Will Brown has described the club's £1.2million losses "a massively disappointing" and "a huge number" but has insisted that the club's future is not under threat.

Speaking exclusively to The Cricketer, Brown admitted that the deficit was greater than had been forecast – Gloucestershire had projected losses closer to last year's £570,000 – and highlighted four key areas.

He pinpointed the abandoned men's ODI between England and Ireland, the unforeseen costs of taking catering inhouse, T20 Blast ticket sales and what he described as a couple of "strategic decisions" around the non-sale of on-site assets.

"2024 is not going to be any easier necessarily, because we're at the back-end of that ECB funding," he said. "But we are a going concern and have had that signed off by the auditors, who are entirely happy that we're solvent and there isn't a cliff-edge that we're going to fall off in a couple of months' time."

In depth: Will Brown confident in Gloucestershire future despite county posting £1.2m losses for 2023


Brown highlighted four areas behind Gloucestershire's losses, including an abandoned ODI and T20 Blast ticket sales [Nathan Stirk/Harry Trump/Getty Images]

What is clear, though, is that another loss on this scale is "absolutely not" something that Gloucestershire "could afford again".

"Not as we currently are," said Brown. "Who knows what funding will be available, what we can generate ourselves, what the future of cricket might look like, which is integral to our longer-term plans – be it the possible relocation of our ground, funding related to The Hundred, investment.

"We still have a very competitive cricket squad, which has to be our starting point, and we have to be competitive after a difficult year last summer. But we've also long held the view that cricket alone is not sustainable, but we have to be sustainable for the cricket.

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"We can see that in 2025, by virtue of us being an international ground, by virtue of some of the ECB's initiatives, there will be some more money coming in that means we will not be looking for a handout or bailout to get us out of this position, because we can actually trade ourselves out of a difficult situation over the next two or three years.

"So, we are confident about the future, albeit 2024 is still absolutely going to be a challenging year, there is no doubt about that, because the macro and game-wide circumstances haven't really changed. If anything, they've got harder because inflation has gone up. But we are solvent, we're fine in that respect; it's not that challenging."

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