Once again the HCGM managed to control its costs and to continue to maintain its operations during this very challenging time and the continuing operational difficulties brought on by COVID.
Although we are still in the middle of a pandemic our financial situation improved from the previous year as we had a loss of $120,297 this fiscal year as opposed to $369,202 last year.
In addition, we reduced our long term debt by $300,450, and there was a substantial improvement in the collection of outstanding school fees. The HCGM received $3,848,000 from the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) which allowed the HCGM to continue offering services and maintain its operations over the last fiscal year. The transfer of the Foyer Hellenique pour Personnes Agees to the HCGM at no cost has improved the financial position of the HCGM and has provided additional liquidity to the organization.
On November 10, 2020, the HCGM audited financial statements for the 2019-2020 fiscal year were presented to the HCGM Board of Directors by Wajih Chemali, Partner for EY
The HCGM announced net income of $983K for the 2019-2020 fiscal year compared to last year when we reported a net loss of $565K. This improved financial position is due in large part to a $1.35 million Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS), which the HCGM recently reapplied for, that we were able to include in our financial statements, just days before EY completed their report.
Looking at the income statement in greater detail, our total revenue dropped by $1.4 million compared to last year, half of which was due to a loss of income from our churches during the COVID lockdown, which coincided with our busiest period of the year. This might have been even more significant had it not been for donations and initiatives like the Keep the Faith Fund. The cancellation of fundraising events, dances, activities, the St. John the Baptist festival, and the MAGIC Mission event, due to COVID, all account for the other half of this loss in total revenue.
Our expenses decreased by $1.5 million compared to last year. With all events and activities cancelled and churches and school buildings closed due to COVID, approximately $200K in event related expenses were eliminated, as were $300K in church expenses. Membership renewals also dropped as renewals are historically higher during an election year. The biggest reduction in expenses however was due in large part to our reductions and restrictions in head count in Q4. However difficult these decisions were to lay off staff and reduce the work week, they were necessary to ensure the HCGM had the available cash flow to continue to operate and ensure we fulfilled our financial obligations.
It is important to note that last year, the HCGM was in breach of an important bank covenant (the debt service coverage ratio), which although not critical, made us vulnerable. This year, however, the HCGM was able to meet this ratio (without including the wage subsidy in this calculation) mainly as a direct result of our cost cutting efforts.
The $1.35 million the HCGM received from the CEWS is money for the HCGM to maintain its operations. With our net loss of $370K before applying the CEWS, the total amount remaining is $980K. While this may seem like a large sum of money, December and February and the summer months, are historically challenging months for payroll and so the HCGM must continue to be prudent and vigilant with how this money is used. While this amount does provide some relief, the HCGM has economic difficulties that still require close attention. We still have employees that are laid off, and others are on a reduced work week that we must look into transitioning back to full time work, all the while keeping tight controls on salaries, which are by far our biggest expense.
All in all, the HCGM managed to control costs and payroll, and to maintain operations during a very challenging year, made even more difficult by the onset of COVID.
In terms of cash flow, we finished the year with $450K, a net improvement from the year before, not including the wage subsidy.
The debt service coverage ratio is an important bank covenant that shows how much the EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization) has been generated compared to the next 12 months of capital and interest repayments under the debt. The minimum is 1.5:1.
Last year, with a net loss of $565K, our ratio was below 1.5, so we had to put all our long-term debt in short term. This was a legal requirement. This year, excluding the CEWS from our calculation, our ratio was 1.79:1.
Short-term and long-term debt to BMO is $6.8 million.
Line of credit is $2 million at prime rate (2.45%) plus 2%. Last year the prime rate was 3.95%.
Long-term debt has two components: $2 million (on a $4.4 million loan at 4.45% due in 2032) and a $2.8 million term loan (4.37% interest due in 2022) converted from line of credit in December 2019. Current portion of long-term debt is $310K. Interest on long term debt is $264K.
Debt owed to the Greek State remains the same at $7.1 million.
Grants are $5.4 million. MEES: $5.2 million, MFA: $14K and Appui Laval/Appui Monterégie: $200K.
Capital improvements were only 300K this year as we had to drastically cut back due to COVID. The backlog of maintenance and repairs on all our buildings will need to be addressed in the new fiscal year.
The HCGM Board of Directors unanimously approved the appointment of EY as their auditors for the 2020-2021 fiscal year.