10 Dec, 12:23
Ireland's John Lacey will referee his first ever RBS 6 Nations match in February, while Alain Rolland is also included in the Elite Panel in what is his last season.
This surplus arises from revenues of €69.3m and expenditure of €62.5m. Despite the difficult operating circumstances, of this expenditure the IRFU again invested over €10m in domestic and community rugby support and development.
However, while reporting a surplus, Grace sounded a cautionary note to this and said: "In arriving at this net surplus, it is important to note that some €14m of revenues and €7m of costs are non-cash items.
"This effectively means that the IRFU generated no net cash from its operations during the year.
"The majority of the €14m in revenues represents the amortisation over their respective terms of the income raised from the forward sale of premium tickets and boxes.
"It is important to realise that these monies have already been spent by the Union on its investment in the Aviva Stadium.
"Likewise the €7m of costs represents the writing off of the Union's investment in the stadium and other assets over their expected useful lives."