Against a backdrop of continued challenges with the income profile of the organisation and as previously intimated to the membership, our financial objective this year was to continue critical support services and utilise reserves to absorb a planned budget deficit for the financial year. This decision was taken in what was considered a transitional time and to facilitate stability within the organisation which had faced significant change since inception. It was also taken to provide stability as a new CEO was brought on board.
As previously advised a contributing factor to the reduced income of the organisation was the reduced investment from sportscotland, which due to timing of their investment year had a knock-on impact for 6 months of our financial year.
Despite there being a budget deficit of c£300,000 approved by the Board, the executive worked hard in challenging circumstances to ensure efficiencies were delivered and to focus on additional income opportunities to ensure that the year end performance came in significantly better than budget. The final results show an increase in revenue versus budget and continued savings on costs compared to prior years and are testament to the continued focus of the team.
Overall, the balance sheet of Scottish Golf Limited remains strong with net assets of £983k. This is largely underpinned by cash and the balance sheet remains robust.
With a four year strategy now in place and with an investment request presented to sportscotland that cover a similar timeline, coupled with a fixing of the per capita fee at £14.50 through until 2022 it is anticipated that the budgeting process for the organisation will be undertaken on a more secure platform for the next few years. In particular the increased per capita fee has created an opportunity to allow the organisation to grow and this increased income, together with stakeholder support to make it happen, means we are looking forward with a positive approach to growing the game.
Investment in the strategic priorities might in the short term see the need for further utilisation of reserves to commence projects and any proposals will be considered on a case by case basis by the Board. Longer term the Board remain committed to reducing the organisation’s dependency on sportscotland investment and membership income, by increasing commercial revenues to deliver more focused spend in key areas for the benefit of our member clubs.
Affiliated clubs in Scotland contribute 56% of our annual income, through a ‘per capita’ subscription collected as part of membership fees.
Through this, every golf club in Scotland, supported by their members, is making a contribution to the development of the game.
Our second highest level of income comes from investment and grants, such as revenue from sportscotland, The R&A and in-kind support.
The organisation continues to have a broad remit, which is reflected in the diverse range of activities we allocate resources to. Indeed, our biggest area for investment continues to be in club development and support, with the aim of sustaining a healthy network of clubs and creating the next generation of players to sustain the game for generations to come.