Fiscal Year 2022 Financial Summary
Fiscal year 2022 saw solid progress in the Museum’s recovery from the significant challenges presented by the Covid health pandemic. The Museum continued an aggressive focus on risk management, while at the same time investing in key strategic areas and new initiatives critical to ongoing and future Museum operations.
During the year we continued to place a high priority on conserving cash and key resources, with emphasis on retaining our extremely talented and committed staff. Staffing remained a challenge given market circumstances created by the broader economy emerging from the pandemic, a situation faced by many institutions and businesses.
Largely due to the Federal Covid Relief we received, the Museum’s financial condition is stable and reserves have been replenished. We received an anonymous gift of $1 million to pay down long-term debt, and we were able to negotiate a ten year renewal of our tax-exempt bond facility. We also increased Museum admission and membership prices. These fortunate factors make it possible to start investing in future facing initiatives in fiscal year 2023.
The Museum also saw a very encouraging increase in attendance, with ticket sales growing more than 400% over fiscal year 2021. As noted elsewhere in this report, this increase reflects the public’s interest in returning to normal activities, but also the strong appeal of the Museum experience for families. The Museum’s “product” remains highly competitive, and in many ways unique. During the year, the Museum was open five days each week, and also for full vacation weeks and holidays.
Fundraising and development efforts also provided important contributions to revenue, sourcing new funds for property, technology, and building maintenance projects; creating innovative partnerships to leverage our early childhood and family expertise; and underwriting next steps in our Waterfront Initiative.
On a less favorable note, the financial markets continued to be inconsistent and often in turmoil. Our Investment Portfolio, as measured on June 30th, lost over 16% year-to-year, with large fluctuations continuing day-to-day.
As we look ahead we are optimistic that barring negative external factors, such as further issues related to the Covid pandemic, or broader economic disruptions, we will continue to regain ground lost during 2020 and 2021. The completion this year of our new 5-year strategic plan is an important step in laying the groundwork for the future. While the path ahead is not completely clear for non-profits like Museums, we are confident that with our team of creative, committed and forward thinking colleagues, Boston Children’s Museum will remain a resource, innovator, and compelling destination.
Amy L. Auerbach
Senior Vice President and CFO