Nationwide Arena Projects Small Annual Surplus For FY '13-14, But Bigger Deficit Next Year
Columbus Arena Management COO Xen Riggs on Tuesday presented budget documents that show that Nationwide Arena "should eke out a $60,000 surplus" when its '13-14 FY ends June 30, but "cautioned that next year, the arena likely will finish with a deficit of about $500,000," according to Lucas Sullivan of the COLUMBUS DISPATCH. Both of those budgets include a $4M "public subsidy of casino tax dollars from the city of Columbus and Franklin County." The publicly owned arena this FY had about $20.5M in "total revenue" and $20.5M "in expenses." The "overwhelming majority of the arena’s operating costs are to provide security, staff, and mechanical and technical resources for concerts and other special events." The arena spent $14.3M to "host those special events" and made $13.8M in "ticket sales and rental revenue." The public "does not make any money off hockey games or related events." Officials have projected that there will "be a deficit next year based on the events that already have been scheduled." Riggs understands that the public "might be frustrated that the arena is barely breaking even, but he said his group has grown revenue" by $1-2M in each of the past few years (COLUMBUS DISPATCH, 6/11).