While club owners PEAK6 might not be hugely concerned about the losses the club has reported in their first two years in Ireland, no business can afford to go on losing money forever.
That’s why a major marketing and fundraising push has been planned for some time – the first glimpse of which we got to see last week.
A new Dundalk FC membership scheme, which will be mainly overseen by media officer Gavin McLaughlin, is the first step towards raising revenue. Fellow new hires David Minto and Aaron Lawless are also working on plans on behalf of the board to ensure that Dundalk FC finally begins to capitalise on its on-field success off it.
While Bill Hulsizer did not reveal targets in his interview with The Argus at the weekend, it is understood that the club believe it is possible to bring in an additional seven figure sum from marketing and fundraising events and activities throughout the year.
That might seem ambitious from the outset but when you consider Sligo Rovers received €491,939 from fundraising and donations last year, it is not beyond the realms of possibility if executed correctly given Dundalk’s successes of recent years.
Already almost 170 people had signed up to the new membership scheme as of Monday morning and while the €15 monthly income for the club might be small, it has the capacity to bring in an additional €30,000 in revenue to Oriel Park in the next 12 months as it currently stands – without taking into account a wider scope for growth.
While not giving too much away on exact plans, Hulsizer confirmed to The Argus that it was the club’s intention to improve marketing off the field.
“We know we’re the best club on the pitch and we want to be the best club off the pitch and I think the people of Dundalk are going to support that because they have been nothing but marvellous.
“If you don’t think money is important to us, you’re wrong. I told you my goal is to win the Champions League. People may think that it’s silly. Would I fire my coach if he didn’t win it? Of course not but in the same way as I aim high for the team I expect my staff to be the best in the world. I want the best physio, the best operations’ officer, the best commercial officer, the best financial officer because by nature we’re competitive.
“Are we panicked over the money that we lost? No. Do we wish we didn’t lose it? Of course, but we’re certainly not saying we’ve got to run away from this.
“We need the fans and the community more involved in Dundalk and we’re doing our best to do that.
“I’m not going to lay our plans on the table because that would be making a promise I’m not sure I could keep because I don’t know the future but we are trying to grow the sport of soccer in Ireland and that’s the only promise I can make you,” he said.