Turnover slumped by more than £20m at the group behind ACC Liverpool and the M&S Bank Arena during its latest financial year.
The ACC Liverpool Group, which is owned by Liverpool City Council, has posted a turnover of £4.8m for the 12 months to March 21, 2021, compared to £25.7m in the prior year.
The group added its pre-tax loss of £2.7m was “not directly comparable” to the prior year’s loss of £6.1m due to “several factors” and that the underlying business performance had instead worsened by £1.4m, “a position not at all surprising given the devastating impact of Covid on the industry in which the group operates”.
ACC Liverpool Group also includes TicketQuarter while its campus is home to the 216-bed Pullman Liverpool hotel.
A statement signed off by the board said: “Turnover for the group as at the end of 2021-21 is incomparable to the prior year due to the impact of the pandemic on turnover in all group areas.
“The ability for all four of the campus venues to operate during 2021-21 was materially driven by the nature of government restrictions in place throughout the year.
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“Whilst the hotel was able to open to the general public over the summer months, the three event venues all had to remain closed and, aside from a short interlude in December 2020 when the M&C Bank Arena and ACC Liverpool Auditorium were able to host a Christmas panto and a number of musical tribute acts and Convention Centre Liverpool successfully hosted the UK’s first socially-distanced business event.
“The company shifted its focus over 2020-21 to three key areas: supporting the city’s pandemic relief efforts, repurposing facilities to trade in permissible activities and minimising the net expenditure and financial outflow to an affordable level, to ensure the company could not only survive but once more thrive.
“The group minimised the impact of Covid on the financial performance of the group through ensuring maximum use of all government grants, schemes and initiatives, on both a local and national level, cessation of all non-contractually committed/legally required expenditure, maximisation of income from other sources and acceleration of cost saving initiatives such as a restructuring of the core team with a move to a leaner operating model.”