New Mardi Gras will announce a stunning profit of almost $500K from the last year and a range of community donations at its Annual General Meeting to be held on August 23.

Indicative of the huge numbers that came out to celebrate Mardi Gras’ 30th anniversary, the concern for the organisation now will be how to maintain, sustain and increase profitability.

New Mardi Gras’ annual report for 2008 has reported a profit of $483,650, which marks a 3.5 percent growth in revenue. This profit will also allow for New Mardi Gras to provide donations to its founding organisations for the first time since its set up.

ACON will receive a donation of $28,000 garnered from the Hats Off production held last festival, while the Gay and Lesbian Rights Lobby has already received a $15,000 cheque.

While the profits are a sign of huge success, there is also concern that the increase is only due to the inevitable success of the 30th anniversary celebrations this year and will therefore not translate to ongoing profitability.

Members are expected to be told of the organisation’s plans to move away from the business plan developed by old Mardi Gras and towards a more sustainable model, which is not as reliant on events like the Mardi Gras Party and Sleaze Ball (which was a financial disappointment last year), to raise revenue.

Plans to boost memberships by another 1500 by the end of next year, plans to combined launch and Fair Day and the expected announcement of substantial NSW Government funding through Events NSW in the coming months are all expected to be outlined to members at the August 23 AGM.

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