The financial performance of Jamaica’s governing body for Olympic and non-Olympic sports continues to raise the bar in demonstrating prudence, innovation, investment savvy and commercial value.
The annual general meeting of the Jamaica Olympic Association (JOA), held in December last year at the Courtleigh Corporate Centre to consider its 2020 financial performance, was more than an expression of members’ confidence in the performance of their apex body.
With unqualified audits and strong balance sheets being in the DNA of sports leading corporate going concern, the JOA recorded, over the prior year, an overall increase in surplus by 85 per cent, a 48 per cent growth in investments, a 23 per cent growth in its general fund, a positive cash flow of 40.3 million dollars – a 27 per cent increase – all of which were exemplified in JOA’s net income margin improvement from 20% in 2019 to 42 per cent in 2020.
In giving context to the strong financial performance of the governing body, JOA President, Christopher Samuda, said “Strength, stability and sustainability are foundation landmarks of the JOA and vision and strategic planning and forecasting propel us beyond the horizon of expectations.”
The ravages of the ongoing pandemic did not prevent the JOA from continuing a strategy of robust member investment and with strong growth in liquidity and returns on equity and investment, JOA Secretary-General and CEO, Ryan Foster, stated: “Our business model has been carefully constructed to allow for business innovation and currency and as any Chancellor of the Exchequer will tell you if you sensibly manage the treasury, audit your finances, safeguard your investments, economise your operations, budget your costs and frugally grow your revenue base then pandemic or no pandemic, growth will not only be endemic but atomic.”
The last quadrennial performance of the JOA has demonstrated that policies and systems are critical to profitability and indispensable to good governance and management. Foster, in giving all a timely reminder, stated that “sport is indeed a business and serious business demands systemic analysis and forecasting, laser checks and balances, strategic commercialisation of your assets and an appetite for revenue.”
Treasurer, Nichole Case, in her closing remarks on what had been a remarkable financial year, stated that he JOA will ” continue to focus on a healthy balance sheet and to exercise frugal expense management in responding to the impact of a global pandemic without any material effect on the Association’s operations as well as to focus on increasing its income streams to support development activities of the various member associations.”
The 2020 financial year was historic in many respects but insights into 2021, given by Foster at the meeting in his report, solicited this presidential response from Samuda: “2020 has made history but not for long as 2021 is destined to have a blockbuster fund.”
With well-known corporate and business personalities on JOA’s Finance Commission, including Chartered Accountants Joe Taffe and Rudolph Speid, complementing JOA Directors Nichole Case, Robert Scott, Gary Peart, Ryan Foster and Christopher Samuda, stakeholders are continuing to get “bang for the buck”
The JOA’s business operations, member investment and strengthening of its financial base have given a new meaning to the business of sport and they continue to positively re-define stakeholders’ confidence and re-engineer industry metrics and practices.