More panic at City Tatts

You might be interested in the latest panic at City Tatts.


It seems that the trading position of the Club got so bad on the weekend that they did not have enough cash to pay winners on the pokies. And we mean winnings of a few hundred dollars.


This caused staff to go round emptying the machines in a mad panic. Even with that, members still had to be paid by cheque.


How is it possible for a club that makes a profit of $20 million on pokies to be in such dire straits?


And what about the management who are paid a fortune to run the Club and have brought it to this position:

  • The financial controller, Mark Cooper, is paid $200,000 a year. Isn’t it time someone called him to account for the Club’s finances?
  • The CEO, Tony Guilfoyle, is paid $600,000 a year. But he is rarely in the Club and takes very little interest in how it is going.


The person who should be asking the questions is the Treasurer, Jimmy Chen, elected by the members to safeguard the finances of the Club. Unfortunately Jimmy rarely knows what’s going on and even if he does ask he is fobbed off with lame excuses by management.




City Tatts Information Desk


Secret Committee Meetings at City Tattersalls Club

We have just heard that the Committee held a secret meeting on Saturday before last, September 15th.

This follows on from the previous secret meeting held on a Sunday in August. (Well, secret before it was mentioned in the Sydney Morning Herald !!)

As long as anyone can remember Committee meetings have always been held on weekdays.

So the only reason for having these particular meetings on weekends would be to keep any knowledge of them from members. And that can only mean that the Committee is moving ahead with plans for a property development with Colliers on the Club’s premises.

We need to find out more about these meetings.

City Tatts Information Desk

Alternate Forms of Income!

Yet another gem from the Sydney Morning Herald articles on City Tattersalls Club.

“We are looking at alternate forms of income”

This was another Patrick Campion classic in response to being questioned about the Committee having secret talks with Colliers. These talks concerned a possible redevelopment of the Club’s premises.

It is another of those Campion statements that would be funny if the Club’s situation was not so serious.

City Tatts had a $800,000 “alternate” form of income (before they gave it away)

As most members would know, although it seems Patrick Campion doesn’t, City Tatts used to lease out a small area of it’s premises at street level to National Australia Bank and the Lotteries Office. These brought in $800,000 in rent each year.  

And what happened to this source of income”

That’s right, they got rid of it !

The Committee decided that it didn’t need this income and instead used the space for the so-called grand entrance. This was a double blunder – losing the $800,000 annual income and spending $1 million on an entrance that looks worse than the one it replaced.

Now they are looking for “alternate forms of income” !

City Tatts Information Desk

Eat your greens at City Tattersalls Club!

For the past six months there have been persistent rumours going around City Tatts that suppliers are not being paid. The latest one is about the fruit and veg man.

It seems that a few weeks ago the Club’s fruit and veg supplier refused to deliver any more until he was paid what he was already owed, which resulted in a bout of panic buying at Woolworths.

This come after previous reports of similar action by garbage collectors and dry cleaners.

There are also persistent reports of suppliers being paid by credit card.

What will it take to get action from the Committee?

City Tatts has a financial controller who is paid $200,000 a year.

Isn’t it about time that someone on the Committee summoned him to explain what is going on with the Club’s finances?

Or better still, reduce his wages by $50,000 and use the money to pay outstanding accounts.

City Tatts Information Desk

Payments to City Tatts club boss?

Here is another gem from the Sydney Morning Herald articles about City Tattersalls Club.

“I have not taken money without the board knowing”

This is what Tony Guilfoyle said when questioned about the $200,000 that he owes to City Tatts. He also said that it was not a loan. Apparently Patrick Campion agreed with both of these statements.

Rather than give our opinion, maybe we should ask the auditors.

What KPMG say about the Guilfoyle loan

Here is what the auditors, KPMG, say:

  • KPMG say that the money was paid to Guilfoyle and that “this does not appear to have been formally approved by the Committee” !!
  • KPMG recommended that the amount owed by Guilfoyle be “approved by the Committee annually including appropriate terms for repayment”.
  • KPMG recommended that “the balance owing to the Club be disclosed in the notes to the financial statements”.

Is it just us or does that sound like a loan that was not approved by the Committee !

KPMG must go !

Now we come to the crux of the matter.

If Guilfoyle and Campion really believe what they say then KPMG must go !

Please understand that this is not our opinion – but it is the only logical opinion the Club could have. Just think about it. KPMG are paid $80,000 a year for the audit. And, according to Guilfoyle and Campion, KPMG are completely wrong in their view of the Guilfoyle loan. If they are so incompetent, on such a simple matter, then how could the Club continue to employ them as auditors?

City Tatts Information Desk

To bond or not to bond – that is the question at City Tattersalls Club !

Continuing on with the Sydney Morning Herald article on City Tatts, let’s have a look at what Patrick Campion had to say on the so-called “Annual Planning Conference” in Melbourne.

The “Annual Planning Conference”

In the Sydney Morning Herald Campion fully defended the “annual planning conferences”. He said the trips “were essential for unpaid board members to bond and were recompense for the time they spent away from families while on club business”.

Where do we start on this one?!!

Some observations on the Campion explanation

The following are just some of the responses that regular forum readers offered us:

  • Most of the Committee are regulars in the City Tatts men’s gym. They always gave the distinct impression, while in the gym, that they actually enjoyed “the time they spent away from families” and never wanted any “recompense” !
  • A few people have pointed out that the Campion justification, ie. to reward Committee members for their time on the Committee, is specifically prohibited by the Registered Clubs Act – see Section 10.
  • But the most hilarious part of Campion’s support for the Melbourne trip came three days later – he cancelled it !
  • City Tatts must have experienced the most rapid cash flow deterioration in the history of Australian clubs. On Saturday morning everything was fine – by Tuesday evening they couldn’t afford $50,000 for the Melbourne trip ! (This, in a club that makes $400,000 profit every week on poker machines)
  • The Club response is eerily similar to the Club’s response to other areas of waste like radio advertising and overseas travel. The Club always says the expense is totally justified but once members start asking questions the Club quietly reduces the spending.

But there is one final point that every concerned member is waiting to see – will they hold the “Annual Planning Conference” in City Tatts. We think they have backed themselves into a corner on this one. If the conference really was “essential” (and they can’t afford to travel to Melbourne) then obviously it would still go ahead – it would just be held in City Tatts !

But if they don’t hold it, they will have admitted that it was always just a holiday for the Committee !

City Tatts Information Desk

Soup Kitchen for Millionaires at City Tattersalls Club !

We are still laughing at the responses of the Chairman and CEO in the Sydney Morning Herald. Let’s turn our attention to something Tony Guilfoyle said.

” ..  operate seven days a week regardless of commercial realities”

One of the issues put to Guilfoyle was the dismal performance of the Club’s restaurants. His response was that “consistent losses on food and alcohol are commonplace in registered clubs because they have a duty to members to operate seven days a week regardless of commercial realities”.

Wow !

Well once we had this explanation we had to go back and look at the Esperanto in a whole new light, since it was the clear winner for “consistent losses”.

The Esperanto – Soup Kitchen for Millionaires !

In 2011 the Esperanto lost $409,000 on a turnover of $919,000. As many have observed this must be some kind of record for losing money in a restaurant that has no rent expense.

But now we understand – it’s a kind of subsided soup kitchen for millionaires !

A few slight flaws with the Guilfoyle explanation

We have detected a few slight flaws in the explanation.

Opening Hours

  • The Esperanto is closed on Sunday and Monday
  • On Saturday it is open for three hours
  • Tuesday to Friday it opens from 12 noon to 3pm and 6pm to midnight

This started us thinking. If these opening hours are only because of a “duty to members” and “regardless of commercial realities” you have to wonder what the opening hours would be without these obligations !

Maybe it would just open when members got their Centrelink payments?

Menu Prices

We also started to wonder about the prices in the Esperanto. As many of you would know, a full meal is $50 plus per head. If they ever decide to run it according to “commercial realities” (or they have to pay rent) how much will a meal be then?!!

Buddy, can you spare a dime !

City Tatts Information Desk