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CEO Update – November  2021

Dear Members,
Welcome to the CEO update for November as planning for the 2022 season continues.

During the past month we have welcomed our members and guests back to Sharks at Kareela and plenty of work is being done behind the scenes from a football and overall business perspective, with a view to the season ahead.

Also in November the NRL squad has returned for pre-season, it has been a particularly positive month for our commercial operations as we announced a further two corporate partners, and the construction crew at the Woolooware Bay development have been active as it continues to take shape.

We have a couple more spectacular drone photos to show exactly where it is all up to.

Nicho Hynes arrived in the Shire, attracting plenty of media attention and our other high profile newcomer Cameron McInnes has impressed all with his attitude and commitment to training. As for Dale Finucane, we anticipate his arrival early in December and feel confident he will fit in seamlessly, as have all the other new recruits joining us for next season.

With positivity surrounding our squad, coupled with the return to PointsBet Stadium in 2022, memberships have been selling fast and we encourage you to get in soon to avoid missing out on securing the best vantage points for next year. More on memberships later in this report.

Please take the time read the below as we keep you informed on all things relating to your Cronulla Sharks and thanks once more for your interest and ongoing support.

Sharks at Kareela

Now more than a month after reopening following the most recent Covid shutdown, we can report that we have been busy across all aspects of Sharks at Kareela and thank those members and guests who continue to patronise the facility.

The response remains overwhelmingly positive, with Elie and his staff committed to making your experience at Sharks at Kareela a positive one.

The venue is Covid safe as we continue to adhere to all government health regulations, so please continue to visit the Club, or if you haven’t done so already, come and join us and check out everything we have to offer.

Moving into the festive season Sharks at Kareela has several events and member benefits to entice you to drop by, with our Christmas raffles sure to be extremely popular. There are over $17,000 worth of prizes on offer at the MEGA Christmas Raffles, while the Ham Raffles kick off this Wednesday.

The Ham raffles take place on the first three Wednesdays in December, with tickets on sale at 6pm for a 7pm start. Fifty Hams will be won per raffle, along with a bonus signed Sharks Jersey.  

The Toy Raffle, featuring $2500 worth of prizes, is on Sunday, December 12, (2pm for a 3pm start) while a huge Seafood Raffle has 40 Prawn Trays, bottles of Wine and bonus Prawn with Lobster trays up for grabs. The Seafood raffle takes place on Wednesday night, December 22.

All the details, as well as everything else you need to know, are on our website at www.sharksatkareela.com.au.  

The Sharks at Kareela Kids Club will reopen December 9. Let the young ones have their fun while you sit back, relax and enjoy the Lobster Special and a Mai Tai Cocktail.

The Freedom $50 members promo has been extended by popular demand, with draws from 7pm every Thursday and Sunday until the end of January. Simply swipe your membership card to enter.

And its not too early to start planning your social activities for 2022, with live music and dinner shows scheduled during January and February. Check out the Sharks at Kareela website to book or for more information. 

Golf is also busy and will continue to be during December and January, with bookings encouraged. Contact Scott or his staff in the Pro Shop if you would like to come down for a game. You can book on-line (https://kareela.miclub.com.au/cms/online-public-bookings/) or by calling (02) 9521 6279. Pro shop staff can also assist with information regarding golfing memberships.

While last but perhaps most importantly in relation to Sharks at Kareela, download our new app today to access your membership anywhere, anytime and have access to a whole range of offers and rewards. Go to https://bit.ly/KareelaApp to download now.

Woolooware Bay
Construction of the Woolooware Bay development continues to be full steam ahead. Looking from our temporary offices in the ET Stand, there is plenty of activity, with the leagues club deck and construction to the north, along with the hotel to the south, beginning to take shape.

The Aoyuan Group report that just about all the ground floor slab is now poured, and the team is well underway on level two. The formwork for level two is almost complete.

By Christmas, concrete slabs up to Level 3 will have been poured and glazing and external finishes will begin on retail levels, as the building begins to emerge above. 

Early next year the podium, retail and carpark levels will be complete, making way for the building to take its final form, and the residential building begins.

See the latest drone photographs of where the construction is currently at, taken just a week ago.

Commercial
Again, a positive month for the Commercial department with the announcement that Pilot, Australia’s largest on-line Men’s Tele-Health platform, and local company Lloyds Building & Development, have come on board as corporate partners for 2022.

Pilot is an organisation rated as Australia’s biggest men’s healthcare start up and since its launch in February 2019, their end-to-end telehealth platform has been used by over 100,000 Australian men. Their branding will appear on the front of the Sharks playing shorts.

As for Lloyds, they are a building company specialising in customised luxury new home and duplex builds. In addition to their NRL shorts partnership, where their logo will occupy the back right panel, Lloyds will also be on the corner posts at Sharks home games for the next two seasons. They have also committed as the 2022 Player Sponsor for new recruit Cameron McInnes.

Read more about our two newest corporate partners by going to the following links. PilotCLICK HERE. LloydsCLICK HERE

The announcement of the Pilot and Lloyds partnerships completes the Sharks apparel sponsors for 2022, with Aramex, Ace Gutters, PointsBet, Zambrero and Southern Comfort to feature on the NRL jersey, Pilot, Lloyds and Madimack on the playing shorts.

This represents the second consecutive season we have filled all apparel sponsor properties.

Further on player sponsorships, in positive news all 17 have been sold ahead of the 2022 season, while in relation to game day hospitality, the private suites in the ET and Monty Porter Stands are almost sold out, with some availability still remaining in the marquee that will act as our Chairman’s Club game day facility at PointsBet Stadium next season.

John Day is the contact for those interested in exploring the remaining corporate hospitality options. Email him at [email protected].

Also during November, we were able to announce that Aramex, our major NRL partner, had extended their support of our club by also becoming sponsors of our women’s pathways, including the NSWRL Harvey Norman Premiership and Tarsha Gale Cup Women’s teams. They join sleeve sponsor Shore Hire and back of jersey partner Minespec parts in supporting our two  teams and the women’s pathways program.

Mention must also be made of the re-signing of John Ryan Freight Management and Elite Legal as partners of our junior rep and academy program, with both to feature on the jerseys and shorts of our Matthews Cup, SG Ball and Jersey Flegg teams next year.

Finally, from our commercial department, we hope to soon finalise a multi-year deal to play games and to increase our community engagement in the Coffs Harbour region. We were embraced by the Coffs Harbour community this year and look forward to making it a long-term relationship.

Community
With almost the entire NRL playing group back on deck as pre-season training continues, planning is underway in regard to our community programs and Sharks Have Heart-supported events to close out the year and heading into 2022. After a difficult and frustrating two years due to Covid, we look forward to the opportunity to get back out and about and to ramp up our community engagement in the months ahead.

A Christmas Blitz, which sees the NRL squad visit hospitals and various community organisations has been scheduled for December, while the Schools Blitz will be back on the agenda early in term one next year.

In other community matters, we recently asked our members and fans to vote on our 2022 Sharks Have Heart Charity jersey and we thank you for your interest and input. Our charity jersey was a popular initiative this year and we look forward to unveiling the winning design for 2022, then to see the players proudly wearing it next season. Stay tuned to Sharks media channels for how you can secure your 2022 jersey, which incorporates the names of all those who support and purchase into the design.

Also significant from our community perspective, was the announcement of our Club Grants donation which this year saw Sharks at Kareela support The Family Co’s Love Bites Respectful Relationships program.

Delivered in Sutherland Shire high schools, Love Bites received $13,000 to continue the outstanding work they do with year 10 students in the Sutherland Shire.

CLICK HERE to read more about Love Bites and our Club Grants donation. 

Membership
The message that the Sharks are coming home to PointsBet Stadium has certainly been heard and embraced, as we report a positive uptake on renewals and subsequently the sale of ticketed memberships for 2022.

So much has been the demand, seats have been fast selling out, with fans encouraged to become members to secure and guarantee the best vantage points to watch the Sharks next year.

Go to the membership portal on the Sharks website – CLICK HERE – where you can purchase your 2022 membership and at the same time select your seat for the upcoming season.

In another incentive to act soon in relation to becoming a member in 2022, the Members-Only Christmas Party on December 11 offers the opportunity to meet your favourite Sharks players, including new boys Nicho Hynes, Dale Finucane and Cam McInnes.

This is however, strictly a members-only event, and with 2022 memberships available from as little as $35, get in now and join us for what is sure to be a fantastic occasion.

In addition to the entire playing group being in attendance, their will be Sharks sponsor activations and giveaways, as well as activities for the kids. Everyone who comes along, needs to be a member and while in following the Public Health order only members who are fully vaccinated will be granted access. (This doesn’t apply to children under the age of 16 years).

Lastly with junior club registrations now getting underway, we have launched our junior league memberships. An add on to your club registrations, become a junior league member at the Sharks, enjoy the benefits that come with it, and at the same time help your junior club win a prize of a coaching clinic conducted by Sharks coaches and Sharks NRL players.

Contact Ben Ross or a member of his team at [email protected] for any membership enquiries.

Merchandise
The Sharks Store at Kareela is currently open and trading from Tuesdays to Fridays, 10am to 2pm, and soon to be opening Saturdays for the month December, however there is still a focus on securing your Sharks merchandise online.

Our 2022 Home and Away jerseys are now available for pre orders, with Christmas stock selling fast, with the 2021 and 2020 Dynasty range remaining on sale at 30 to 40 per cent off. Keep an eye out for further discounts to come during December.

Currently shipping complications due to Covid disruptions sees us experiencing a small delay in relation to the 2022 Dynasty range, with the new gear scheduled to arrive in store early December.

All Sharks merchandise is available on-line through https://store.sharks.com.au/  including pre-sales of soon to be delivered stock.  

Football
The initial group of players returned the first week of November, the rest filtering back in during the weeks that followed, with just Dale Finucane to join us in early December as the last of our fulltime squad members to begin his pre-season preparations.

Reports from training are that everything is going to plan, the coaching staff is satisfied with the progress being made and there is plenty of positivity around the team at the present time.

Trials are locked in against the Panthers and Bulldogs in the New Year, then following the release of the NRL draw on November 9, we can look ahead to our season-opener in Canberra.

As I’m sure you are aware, our first home game is when we host the Eels in what promises to be a huge homecoming clash at PointsBet Stadium on March 19.

We have plenty of travel on our schedule, with games in Brisbane, the Gold Coast, Townsville, Melbourne, as well as Newcastle, Canberra and a regional match in Tamworth against the Tigers, and we very much look forward to returning to Coffs Harbour in round 15 after our successful venture to the NSW North Coast earlier this year. 

As touched on in my intro, Nicho Hynes arrived in the Shire to a massive reaction, both from the Sydney media and from our Sharks fans, all of which he took in his stride. We are confident he will be a huge inclusion in our team for the next three years.

Away from the NRL squad, the Sharks junior representative and Women’s rugby league teams have also begun to prepare for 2022, where we hope they enjoy interruption free seasons after the Covid setbacks that have plagued the last two years.

Further to that, congratulations and good luck to those selected to attend the NSW Blues pathways camp on December 12, with the men’s and women’s camps to be conducted concurrently under the guidance of NSW Origin coach Brad Fittler. Enjoy the experience and we wish you all well.

Draft 2022 season draws for all NSWRL competitions have been distributed to the clubs and we will communicate those schedules when they are confirmed.

Like I said at the end of October, this time of the year should be a quiet period for rugby league and the NRL, however a lot continues to go on behind the scenes as we put the building blocks in place to be successful across all the grades and throughout the Club in 2022.

And in what is late breaking news, just today the Sharks have announced a four-year contract extension for Blayke Brailey. The contract was only finalised and signed at around midday and with Blayke much sought after from other NRL clubs, his retention is a positive endorsement for what he feels is building here at the Sharks and also great loyalty shown from someone who has been in our pathways system since he was 13.    

In closing
In concluding this November Update and in addressing the Sharks status across the group, we can report the entire football staff and players will all be fully vaccinated by early December. 

As for Sharks at Kareela, all staff currently working, as per NSW Government public health orders, are fully vaccinated.

The board and management are meeting to discuss vaccination protocols for Sharks at Kareela in relation to members and guests for the immediate period following December 15 when government protocols change. An outcome of those discussions will be communicated once determined.

Those discussions will also cover our Football operations including all players, along with stadium access beyond December 15 which is also to be reviewed.

Thanks again for your support and interest in the Sharks. Please continue to stay safe, join us at Sharks at Kareela over the festive period and don’t forget to secure your 2022 Sharks membership.

Up Up
Dino Mezzatesta