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Richest NRL club in 'fight for survival'

Brisbane Broncos

They may be the NRL's richest club but Brisbane admit even they face a fight for survival due to the coronavirus shutdown.

The Broncos appeared set to survive the pandemic with almost $15 million in the bank and reportedly amassing revenue of almost $52 million last year.

However, Brisbane CEO Paul White revealed on Wednesday that he may be forced to remain at the club to help the NRL flagship rebuild after initially planning to leave at the end of 2020 - his 10th season at the helm.

White said the Broncos were in a better position than most clubs after launching pandemic contingency plans a month ago.

But he admitted the game's postponement had still hit the glamour club hard, with some staff on their $22 million payroll made redundant and others taking "large" salary cuts including himself and head coach Anthony Seibold.

"It is a really tough time for our industry. We are in a fight for our survival as a game, and for us as a club," White said.

"We certainly want to be around for season 2021 and we are looking at all scenarios."

Asked if he could guarantee the club's survival, White said: "The fortunate thing about our club is that we started planning and did some scenario testing for this probably four weeks ago.

"No one could have anticipated where this would start and finish and no one can now.

"At this point in time our club is in a strong position, bearing in mind that our business model is based on another 15 clubs participating and the NRL competition proceeding.

"But we have already taken some strong action and there will be more pain to come unfortunately for some wonderful people at our organisation.

"We want the competition to survive, so we are united as 16 clubs to take whatever measures are necessary for this competition to survive."

White had planned to leave at season's end but admitted he could extend his tenure to help the Broncos cope with the pandemic's fallout.

"I made the decision to make this year my last in the best interests of the club," he said.

"If I believe that me remaining for a period of time is what this club needs and the board gives an indication that they may like to see that happen I will make that decision at the time.

"But I am not going to tap out until I am satisfied that the club is back on its feet.

"I not giving you a definitive answer but I am not saying no either."

Meanwhile, Seibold backed White to steer the Broncos through the pandemic.

"We are not immune to the challenges that society faces at the moment," he told Fox League Mornings.

"It's a surreal feeling when you see the lines to Centrelink on the news.

"I am taking a significant pay cut. I think it is the least I can do. It's going to be challenging times for our staff.

"We are feeling financial pain but Paul is doing a fantastic job."

© AAP 2020