Annual General Meetings/2023/Treasurer’s report

From OpenStreetMap Foundation

Detailed Reports

The fiscal year we legally must report on is 2022, i.e. from 01 Jan 2022 to 31 Dec 2022. See Official Financial Statement 2022.

Like in the previous year, I would like to remind you of two caveats:

Both engaging contractors and employing people is reflected as Administrative Expenses, although these expenses constitute our actual business and only to a small part overhead.

When we buy servers or similar hardware in use for multiple years then this is sum-zero in the accounts above - our cash assets go down as much as our fixed assets go up. Instead, over the useful lifetime of the hardware the depreciation grows anually until it matches the initial cost of the piece of hardware. When we dispose of the hardware, this amount is substracted from both depreciation and fixed assets.

In other words: if you would like to know whether the organisation is still actionable then you should watch the "Cash at bank".

We have both a deficit in the Profit and Loss as well as lowering Cash at Bank. While this has been expected for 2022 as a consequence of employing an SRE and using ringfenced donations from earlier years, the board has made it a top priority to again match income to expenses in 2023:

Here is the preliminary Profit and Loss 2023 and the preliminary Balance Sheet 2023. There is not only economic activity from December missing, but also outstanding payments.

Please note that the accounting has been restructured to get closer to standard accounting: while our actual cost have been mostly unchanged, the following three things have happened: The 2023 draft profit and loss includes depreciation, rising Administrative Costs by 44000 GBP. We now payed our SRE for a full year, and this means another about 48000 GBP more Administrative Costs. Unlike 2022, we did not profit from a falling GBP exchange rate, making a difference of about 36000 GBP.

The Foundation is grateful for all the donations it has received - this shows that the community backs the Foundation with regard to its recent growth. The fundraising campaign has largely contributed towards the donations of 156000 GBP until end of November, and December still coming. And the corporate membership income has grown by over 60000 GBP.

Towards a More Ordinary Budget

The foundation has a longer list of projects to improve mapper experience that ultimately require to spent money on it. A typical example are vector tiles: while this has been promised since a decade, it only starts to get implemented with using money for the work. The full-time Senior Reliability Engineer is another example.

As downtream data users profit from the map data, and the availability of map data has also progressed human society at large, it makes sense to ask both data using organisations as well as philantropic organisations for support. These organisations must show to their sources that they spend to money well. This requires the OpenStreetMap Foundation to get strategic planning, budgeting, and expense monitoring in line with standards. In other words: while the Foundation always strived to make its spending clear to the community, it must now go even further and present the spending in line with standard accounting practices.

To arrive there will still take some time in 2024. The first attempts in 2023 had mixed results. Nonetheless, the board assumed a lot more responsibility to track expenses, and also the board approved the Strategic Plan. You will likely see more documents arriving over the year 2024. That way, the Foundation can actually ask organisations for money to realize projects the mappers want to see done, without depleting the mapper's financial situation.