[theforum] Financial Report

David Kaufman david at gigawatt.com
Sun Nov 23 00:52:40 CST 2008

Hi Erika,

Erika <ekm at seastorm.com> wrote:
> We had an important funding discussion going on that seems to have been
> cut short, now.  I know what *I* took from it, though we never really 
> came
> up with any concrete strategy, or no one stood forward and said "I would
> like to do this" such that we have anything to look forward to in terms 
> of
> action.  Does someone want to act on this issue?  If so, how?
> Maybe we could get an update from David: regarding remaining funds?  so 
> we
> know how much time we have to come up with, and implement, an appropriate
> strategy.

Here is "the skinny" on evolt's current financial picture:

  Current Assets

    PayPal account    1,724.74
    Checking account    230.30
               Total  1,955.04

  Expenses (last 12 months)

    Hosting             993.74
    Domains Godaddy (3)  28.63
               Total  1,022.37

  Revenue (last 12 months)

    Google Ads          499.49
    Donations            85.13
    Amazon Referrals      4.45
               Total    589.07

All donations go to (and stay in) PayPal.  I still have never transferred 
money from PayPal in my 5 years as treasurer except once, about $300 to 
cover our initial hosting setup fees at the Planet.  All the reserves now 
in the PayPal account are from donations (the bulk of it from the 2003 
donation drive, although there have been numerous small and regular 
donations since, including a few generous "subscriber" donors, who 
auto-transfer something each month.  They are evolt heroes!

Google, Amazon and (the apparently broken) Cafepress revenue goes into the 
checking account, and hosting and domain fees are paid by debit card from 
the checking account.

The keen analyst's eye will note that, as previously reported, Google ad 
revenue has settled to a level about 60% of its former glory.  It used to 
track our hosting expenses month for month, sometimes a little more, 
sometimes a little less, which was nice.  But in the last 18 months as it 
has declined, we've consumed about half of the approximately $500 reserve 
we'd had in the checking account for about 3 years prior.

So we're now running a $36.11 per month deficit which, if things remain the 
same, will not dry up our current assets for 4 and a half years.

So evolt is in no immediate danger that four more kindly-souled $10/month 
subscriber-donors couldn't stave off indefinitely :-)

As an interesting aside, an ad sales representative from Google called me 
last year to offer to help evolt increase its revenue to $4000 per month by 
adding big flashy ads to LEO and WEO.  Funny that Google knew exactly how 
much traffic we had on those hosts, even though we currently only run their 
AdSense tracking codes on BEO... but then I realized, they know how much 
traffic we get because they send us most of it, from Google search 
click-throughs, which they do track of course.  And they know exactly how 
much advertisers are willing to pay per thousand impressions on evolt, 
because on Google AdWords, advertisers bid on keywords, the keywords Google 
generates when it spiders our site.

I patiently explained to him that we weren't capitalists, but he just 
didn't get it.  Maybe we *should* plaster video ads all over the site, but 
I didn't want to be the one crucified here for suggesting it :-)


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