AGM season for Byron’s stakeholder groups.

Over the past weeks most of our shire’s key stakeholder groups have navigated their Annual General Meeting (AGM) responsibilities. The summary report of each group is an interesting read offering insight into the sectors prevailing zeitgeist.

In the interest of transparency below are some key highlights from Destination Byron’s (DB) report for financial year 2018/19.

$42,063 in revenue (vs. $41,016 previous year); $23,714 in expenses (vs. $42,985 previous year); DB achieved a surplus of $18,349 (vs. -$1,970 previous year).

Revenues were derived from $29,035 in sponsorships, $12,206 from the annual tourism symposium, and $822 miscellaneous. DB was very successful at securing enough funding to operate for the year due to a highly successful sponsorship drive which was supported by a new sponsorship prospectus and list of sponsor benefits. Ballina Byron Gateway Airport’s contribution as a major sponsor is worthy of a very large ‘thank you’. We’re proud to have such a lovely and easy to use local airport for our adventures further afield. Local business sponsorship of our committee’s efforts appears to be a far superior funding model than charging individuals an annual membership fee.

The committees expense structure was heavily reduced year-over-year with the absence of a paid administration sub-contractor (who used to work a minimum 10-hours per week). This labour was replaced by a skills-based board of volunteers supported by the introduction of two paid specialist sub-contractors. The event sub-contractor assisted the committee in architecting, marketing, administering and delivering the seven events. The marketing sub-contractor assisted the committee is social media, website design, blog management, and EDM creation.

Major expenses for the FY were -$9,218 in event costs, -$8,765 in contract labour/consultants and -$1,828 insurance.

The committee underwent a re-branding exercise in January 2019 with new a logo, tagline ‘sustainable and responsible’, and a refreshed website and approach to social handles.

Member numbers now sit at around 625, up from 464 in November 2018. Membership is currently free thanks to the wonderful sponsors who provide the committee with sufficient funding to operate. Services offered to members in the past 12 months were: –

  • Seven events with attendance ranging between 16 and 150 people. The annual tourism symposium remains our hallmark event with 150 in attendance this year. Moving forward the focus will be on smaller special interest events, with a ‘meet-up’ look and feel.
  • Access to seven purchased statistics reports that included Byron Shire Tourism Monitors, Domestic Day Visitor market, Sydney Market, Melbourne Market, and a Byron vs Noosa comparison. Snapshots of all can be found on our website.
  • Twenty-four email communications were sent including monthly news and stories, event invitations, event re-caps and visitor economy topics.

DB’s main strategic focus in 2020 will be to…

  • Attract and retain a skills-based committee of volunteers willing to contribute their personal time to benefit the sustainability of Byron’s local visitor economy.
  • Take on several ‘head-wind’ topics by facilitating discussion and debate so visitor economy participants can form intellectual opinions.
  • Deliver an event series that is more meaningful, and free or at cost to members.
  • Continue to acquire meaningful research and data on behalf of its members and sponsors.
  • Attempt to further reduce committee expenses.