One more week, then the new season in Swiss ice hockey begins. Then 17’031 fans who have been vaccinated, tested or recovered will be allowed back in Bern. But you can still feel the effects of last season in the capital.
The SCB shows a loss of 1.5 million francs. However, this would have been significantly higher without support. From the federal government, the SCB received A-Fonds-perdu contributions of 5.7 (!) Million francs based on the audience income from the 2018/19 season. In addition, subscribers have given up two thirds of their money. Without help, the minus would have been seven million francs!
Got away with a black eye
“It was existential,” says President Beat Brechbühl looking back. «Thanks to the help of the public sector, the sponsors and the spectators, we got away with a black eye. It could have ended much worse. ” The SCB, whose sales collapsed by a full 15 million to 11 million, also expects a loss in the new financial year. “The pandemic is not over,” warns COO Rolf Bachmann. “We feel a certain reluctance.”
Before the pandemic, season ticket sales in Bern were stopped in August at 13,000. And now? “We have been able to sell well over 10,000 cards and will break the 11,000 mark. But that’s more than we expected, ”says Bachmann happily.
Slump in sales also in Biel
EHC Biel is also in the red. The Zealand countries suffer a drop in sales of 27 percent to 12.7 million francs. The minus is limited at 346,000 francs, but would amount to 7.5 million francs without support. “It looked very bad for a long time,” says CEO Daniel Villard. “Thanks to the great solidarity and the short-time work, which helped us enormously, we were able to reduce the minus to a bearable level.”
The EHCB received CHF 2.5 million in A-Fonds-perdu contributions. Subscribers, sponsors and donors contributed 4.5 million. This is one of the reasons why the Zealanders succeeded in extending their contracts with goalkeeper Joren van Pottelberghe (24) and striker Toni Rajala (30) early until 2024 and signing Noah Schneeberger (33).