Basketball Australia: Gold Coast Blaze Withdraws from NBL
Basketball Australia Media Release 18 July, 2012
Basketball Australia today confirmed that the ownership of the Gold Coast Blaze had taken the decision to withdraw from the National Basketball League.
After going into voluntary administration earlier this year, the club’s owners were given until Friday 13 July 2012 to demonstrate they could meet all necessary licensing requirements – including financial terms.
The club’s owners proposed a community partnership model involving significant and necessary cost savings – which the BA Board strongly welcomed and supported in principle, pending confirmation of funding streams by the extended deadline of 31 July 2012.
However, late last night, the club’s owners advised Basketball Australia that they had decided to withdraw from the NBL.
“To be frank, this is hugely disappointing – it’s unfortunate for the club’s players and fans that the owners have made the decision to withdraw from the NBL,” Acting Chief Executive Officer Scott Derwin said.
“Basketball Australia has been consistent in every step of this process as to what the requirements are for the Blaze to play in the 2012/13 NBL season – and we’ve done that to maintain the integrity of the league.
“The BA Board appreciates that the club’s owners have put in enormous effort to keep the Blaze alive under difficult circumstances, and we were extremely supportive of the community partnership model they proposed.
“But we make no apologies for insisting on tangible and detailed confirmation of funding streams or for holding the Blaze accountable to the same financial scrutiny applied to all of our NBL clubs.
“The Blaze had advised they had a $500,000 capital investment from a mystery supporter – but were unable to provide any further detail on the funding source or stream. There were also projected revenue lines from sponsors and other sources of over $1 million that could not be verified at this time and for which we requested further evidence by 31 July.
“Ultimately, a mystery funding source won’t cut it. Given the club’s recent financial uncertainty, it is not unreasonable to expect solid and detailed financial modelling.
“Despite reports to the contrary, BA and the NBL have been in continual contact with the club’s players, coach and staff to ensure their welfare.
“Naturally, we all would have preferred to see the Blaze in the NBL, but the reality is the club could only move forward with a viable and sustainable business model.”