South Africa: Safa Is on Firm Financial Foundations

Photo: Aliou Goloko/AllAfrica
Afcon Games: Côte d'Ivoire celebrates after scoring against Mali.

The South African Football Association (SAFA) is on firm financial foundations to deliver upon its mandate. This is according to SAFA CEO Dr Robin Petersen, who was speaking at the release of the Association's 2012 annual financial report.

Dr Petersen confirmed that "the final pieces of the financial jigsaw were coming together."

"Good financial governance lies at the core of any business and achieving an unqualified audit, even one that indicates a trading loss, is absolutely vital," said the CEO.

The report shows a loss of fifty-six million rand (R56 million) although some thirty-million rand (R30 million) of this loss involves non-recurring amounts such as the impairment of assets. Losses from core operations are twenty-seven-point-nine million rand (R27,9 million), which have resulted from increased expenditure on our National Teams, and increased investment in football development.

"In accordance with our mandate, we invested in football, with the National teams' expenditure rising by fifteen-million rand (R15m) owing to a full programme of matches for all of our teams, including the Olympic preparations of Banyana Banyana. Our expenditure on governance rose only 10%, and our other adminstration costs dropped as we contained costs and curtailed programmes," said SAFA President, Kirsten Nematandani.

"In addition to indicating that SAFA has a strong balance sheet and is most definitely a 'going concern', the KPMG audit confirms that the actions we are currently implementing to put SAFA back into the black on a sustainable basis are the right medicine.

These actions include: reducing costs (through organisational re-engineering and outsourcing a number of our financial, procurement and secretariat functions to Ernst & Young); the sale of unproductive assets such as the excess World Cup busses ; and, working within a committed revenue budget as opposed to targeted budgets as in the past," added Petersen.

"We must emphasise that we are set on exceeding the committed revenue budget through prioritising further sponsorships which will, in turn, release funds to accelerate the implementation of the new Technical Master Plan."

SAFA has recently concluded new sponsorship deals with SAB and ABSA, and look forward to announcing further partnerships in the near future.

"These are challenging economic times for every business in South Africa and we wish to express our gratitude to our sponsors and suppliers who we very much see as partners in developing South African football," concluded Nematandani.

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