Saskatchewan Roughriders president Craig Reynolds forecasts significant financial impact for his football team.
The CFL voted to cancel its 2020 season on Monday, August 17 amid the COVID-19 pandemic after the Canadian government denied the league a $30 million interest-free loan. Reynolds stated the Riders will lose in the range of $10 million this year due to the coronavirus crisis.
“I would say that our initial projections in that range have held. We will have a significant loss. It’s certainly the biggest financial crisis we’ve ever been faced with in our history,” Reynolds said.
“We’ve done our best to manage costs, we are certainly accessing government programs, but we absolutely have to look at our business. We will be working with the CFL at looking at the business model.”
Saskatchewan posted a loss of over $200,000 for the 2019-2020 fiscal year, in 2018-2019 the franchise earned a net profit of $1.4 million, which was up from $781,930 in 2017-2018 and $33,000 in 2016-2017. Reynolds projects the Riders stabilization fund of $7.6 million will be burned through by late in the fall.
“There’s really no playbook for a global pandemic, the league hasn’t been through this before,” Reynolds said.
“We’re going to take a really deep dive into our business model, in some cases reinvent the league in ways that we need to.”