Durban ICC posts profit of R69 mln

2013-03-20 00:00

AN extreme makeover is on the cards for Durban’s International Convention Centre (ICC) following a record year of profits.

Thanks to some major conferences in the 2012 financial year, the ICC finds itself flush with cash, which CEO Julie-May Ellingson said she wanted to plough it back into the venue.

Revenue rose to R237 million, translating into a pre-tax profit of R69 million.

The convention centre is owned by eThekwini Municipality and for many years has been perceived as a drain on the city’s finances.

Not any more, Ellingson said yesterday at a media presentation.

“We’ve picked up a lot of flak with the perception that the ICC has been a drain on the fiscus of the municipality and we need to correct that.”

Financial director Jeremy Hurter said the ICC had not received any money from council for operating costs since 2008.

The annual report showed improvement in many areas of operation — training of staff was significantly increased, contribution to GDP was the highest ever at R3,11 billion and employment rose by several thousand to 9 327 direct and indirect jobs.

The bulk of the money came from international conferences, which in turn generated just shy of R1 billion in foreign exchange earnings for the country.

Durban Chamber of Commerce and Industry has no illusions about the ICC’s value to the city’s economy.

Chief executive Andrew Layman paid tribute to Ellingson and her team, especially for their part in trying to dispel negative sentiments about the facility.

“Its construction was obviously a huge capital investment on the part of the city, but the chamber believes that it was money well-spent.”

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