As in previous years, our financial objective at the start of the year was to deliver our desired services while maintaining a break even position (prior to Special Projects). While the financial and economic environment remains challenging, Scottish Golf finished the financial year absorbing the impact of a reduction of income streams through effective cost management and prioritisation of services.
This resulted in a small surplus for the year prior to Special Projects. Special Projects require sign off from the Board of Scottish Golf and are considered on an annual basis as part of the wider budget discussions.
During the year, sportscotland’s government and lottery funding sources were significantly reduced, directly impacting the governing bodies across all sports. Scottish Golf receives funding from sportscotland for the period 1 April to 31 March each year. At the start of the financial year we had planned for a drop in our sportscotland funding from £1,275,000 to £1,025,000, taking into account the knowledge that the previously awarded funding for ClubGolf of £250,000 per annum had ceased. In addition to this, just prior to the end of March (six months into our financial year), we were made aware that the core level of funding received in the period would fall from £1,025,000 to £665,000.
Following a successful application to sportscotland, an additional £105,000 was subsequently awarded to Scottish Golf to support focus in areas of equality and inclusion. Overall, a net fall of £255,000 is spread across the current financial year ended 30 September 2017 and the financial year ended 30 September 2018.
The size of the reduction in sportscotland investment, alongside declining commercial income, resulted in some difficult decisions both internally within Scottish Golf and with regard to external services to ensure that our clubs were serviced at a consistent level whilst managing our costs efficiently. The majority of the burden fell internally.
The use of reserves was sanctioned again for a Special Project in the 2017 financial year – the payment of Ladies’ Golf Union (LGU) fees of £58,000 in the current year to ensure equality of treatment between male and female members. This was the final year that these fees were payable, with the LGU now fully absorbed into The Royal & Ancient operations.
It is testament to the work of the team and the tough decisions taken during the year that despite the significant fall in income mid-way through the year, the final position met our objective of a break even position. Overall, the balance sheet of Scottish Golf Limited remains strong with net assets of £1,132,000. This is largely underpinned by cash and the balance sheet remains robust as at 30 September 2017.
As a longer term strategy for Scottish Golf Limited is developed during 2018, the Board will look at a reserves policy that compliments the strategy, whilst ensuring that a prudent level of reserves is maintained. As part of this strategy, the Board have also committed to look at reducing the organisation’s dependency on sportscotland funding, reducing the reliance on membership income and increasing commercial revenues.
A summary of our Income and Expenditure can be found below, with full financial details contained within our Annual Reports for the past two years via the links at the bottom of the page.
- Club Subscriptions: 51% (up from 46%)
- Grants (incorporating Government funding): 27% (down from 39%)
- Marketing & Commercial: 6% (down from 7%)
- Other Income: 13% (up from 6%)
- Events: 3% (up from 2%)
- Development: 39% (up from 32%)
- Performance: 26% (up from 25%)
- Administration: 14% (down from 23%)
- Marketing: 11% (no change)
- Events: 10% (up from 9%)