Cricket Ireland confirms €100,000 short-term loan from chief executive
Money was given against advice of Sport Ireland to pay wages and ease cash flow crisis
Cricket Ireland said it experienced ‘significant cash flow constraints’ last year after incurring losses when Ireland’s first test match against Pakistan was rained out. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw
Cricket Ireland says it has recovered from the cash flow crisis that led to it accepting a €100,000 short-term loan from its chief executive.
The loan was provided by chief executive Warren Deutrom last October against the advice of Sport Ireland and without the board being informed until last month.
The organisation said the loan, reported by the Sunday Independent yesterday, went ahead only after its lawyers confirmed there was nothing improper about it and that it was permissible under its rules, and no other financial options were forthcoming.
It said the loan was properly documented in an agreement and was repaid within six weeks, once expected incoming funds were received.
Cricket Ireland said it experienced “significant cash flow constraints” last year after incurring losses when the opening day of Ireland’s first Test match against Pakistan was rained out and receiving less money than expected from the International Cricket Council (ICC).
The organisation incurred “vast costs” arising from its first season as a full member of the ICC, while a large payment due from broadcasters was delayed by a dispute outside of its control,
It sought help from the ICC, Sport Ireland and its bankers, none of which were able to help “for one reason or another to the extent we needed before a number of pressing payments fell due”.
“Therefore, as an action of last resort, in October 2018 Cricket Ireland accepted a short-term loan of €100,000 from Mr Deutrom to ensure staff and players and the cricket family could be paid, and a number of creditors satisfied.”
The board was kept informed of the cash flow difficulties during the year, and Mr Deutrom engaged with Sport Ireland chief executive John Treacy from August, “ensuing we were compliant with our grant requirements to notify them of financial difficulties”.
“Mr Deutrom advised Mr Treacy of his intent to proceed with the loan. While Mr Treacy advised that his preference was for the loan not to proceed, he advised Mr Deutrom to seek legal advice to investigate if such a loan was proper.”
Last month, after details of John Delaney’s €100,000 loan to the Football Association of Ireland became public, Cricket Ireland again raised its own loan with Sport Ireland, as well as speaking with its auditors and informing its finance committee and board.
“It was agreed that Cricket Ireland would note the loan in our annual accounts. This level of transparency is not strictly necessary, as Mr Deutrom is not a director of the company, however Cricket Ireland believes that such transparency is part of good governance.”
Ross McCollum, chairman of Cricket Ireland, said Mr Deutrom was not a director and consequently there was no need to record the loan in its annual financial statements.
“However, in the interest of transparency and recognising the public mood, Cricket Ireland will ensure our annual statements note the loan,” he said.
What Mr Deutrom had done was in the best interests of an organisation “under difficult circumstances, with all appropriate procedures followed and with the relevant parties made aware”.