Belfast Telegraph

Pitch company's pre-tax profits are £3.2m after success at World Cup

By Gordon Deegan

Pre-tax profits at the sports group that installed the stadium pitch for last year's football World Cup final in Russia increased five fold to £3.2m.

New accounts filed by George Mullan's Support in Sport Group UK Ltd show that the pre-tax profits soared after revenues increased by 25.5% from £25.19m to £31.64m in the 12 months to the end of last December.

The UK-based Support in Sport Group Ltd is part of the SIS Pitches group which last year designed, constructed and installed six of the 12 stadium pitches for Russia 2018.

SIS Pitches has an office in Dungannon, Co Tyrone, and has worked on a range of pitches at home and abroad.

They included the pitch for the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow where the first match and opening ceremony of the World Cup was staged, as well as the final.

The company counts Barcelona and Real Madrid as two of its many blue-chip clients, and previously SIS provided pitches for the European Champions League and Six Nations Rugby.

Closer to home, it's worked on a pitch for Linfield FC at Olympia Sports Village beside Windsor Park, Belfast.

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It's also worked on a pitch at St Michael's College, Enniskillen, Co Fermanagh, and Aughnacloy College in Co Tyrone.

The firm has worked too on synthetic multi-use sports pitches for Derry and Strabane District Council.

The business paid out dividends of £467,905 last year after paying out no dividend in 2017. On its future developments, the directors said that the business can continue to benefit from the momentum it has built up over recent years and throughout 2018 to drive growth in 2019.

The directors added: "It therefore expects to be able to achieve, and has targeted, further increase in turnover and profit for the current year."

At the end of 2018, the firm had net assets of £6.3m while its cash pile increased from £549,379 to £1.089m.

The profit takes account of non-cash deprecation costs of £620,031. A breakdown of the firm's revenues show £26.9m was generated in the UK, £3.26m in the 'rest of Europe' and £1.46m in 'rest of World'. Numbers employed fell from 108 to 102 with staff costs rising from £3.12m to £3.96m.

Belfast Telegraph