K rock Football

Cats to pull pin on pokies

Geelong president Colin Carter and CEO Brian Cook. (krockfootball.com.au Image/Al Packer)

GEELONG has reiterated its commitment to ending its reliance on poker machines for revenue.

Colin Carter has told the president’s function before yesterday’s win over St Kilda the Cats have plans to sell its remaining machines, of which krockfootball.com.au understands there are 50 at its The Brook function centre at Point Cook, by the end of 2018.

“We’re making good on our commitment to exit gaming,” Carter said.

“We have now sold more than half of the machines we had and plan to be out completely by the end of the year.

“We recognise that many, perhaps most of the pokie machines, are used appropriately… we studied this and found that 90 per cent of the bets were for a dollar or less, which sounds pretty much like a recreational player and that is fine.

“But we also found … that around 10 per cent of the bets were for much more than a dollar and this is potentially the dark side of the business.

“So we have decided that we should not stay in an industry that can damage some of our patrons and have decided to get out.”

Geelong’s reliance on gaming revenue has diminished in recent years, with the net profit falling from $4m in 2015 – the last year of operation of Club Cats – to $1.1m in 2017.

North Melbourne is currently the only Victorian club not making money from gaming, having exited the industry more than a decade ago.

Earlier this month Melbourne confirmed they would end their association with poker machines by 2022.

Twitter: @tom_king79

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