It’s that time of year again.
Burning Man 2016 Annual Report
Burning Man 2016 IRS Form 990
Burners.Me Previous Financial Coverage: 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
- revenues up to almost $46.2 million, up from $36.9 million in 2015.
- Revenue less Expenses= $9,242,666
- Donations received over $8 million (including Fly Ranch mega-donors).
- salaries up $2 million
- Cash and receivables: $9.5 million
- Total assets: $24.4 million
- Ticketing $873,795
Even though it is more than a year and a quarter since Burning Man 2016, they still aren’t able to share with us the actual data in their annual report. A lot of it they just took from 2015.
I can’t make the fancy graphics like them, but I can look on their form and see what “Grants Provided” and “Donations Received” were for 2016, the year this report is supposed to be about.
Grants Provided 2016: $1,518,490
Donations Received 2016: $8,074,456
Note that for the last couple of years at least, “grants” has included all the cost of the Man, base, and the various structures that now surround the Man base. Donations went up nearly $7 million, total revenue went up about $10 million, while grants went up less than a hundred grand.
The image above makes it look like 5% of the budget goes to Burners Without Borders, and Fly Ranch takes up about 10% of their year-round time and money. Neither of these figures matches the actual numbers.
We commented last year that it seemed a little pathetic that Burners Without Borders, an organization that once held so much promise, donated a mere $4000 across 8 projects. They’ve managed to cut those outrageous costs, donating now $3415, or less than 1/13,000th of Burning Man’s revenue.
We’re making the world a better place, with $3,415. They spend way more on their European Leadership Conference. I mean, shouldn’t things like that be self-funding, if not actually raising funds?
The only founders still working full time are Marian Goodell (50 hours) and Larry Harvey (40 hours). Harley Dubois must knock off work early, or maybe she takes a longer lunch break – she only puts in 36 hours per week.
The guy actually running Burning Man, Charlie Dolman, only gets paid slightly more than the many and varied PR and IT staff.
Kudos to the board members who give their time to Burning Man for free.
Legal costs remain astronomical, more than half a million dollars a year. And that’s after Board member Terry Gross gave a generous (for a lawyer) 20% discount on his firm’s fees – although he clawed some of that back with $20k+ in personal payments.
The Artumnal fundraiser appears to have made a loss. They paid $31,904 rent for the use of The Regency Ballroom for an evening.
Burner money paid for a lot of international
junkets speaking engagements, including Marian Goodell sharing the stage with the Vatican…which kind of makes sense given the sort of thing we’ve seen from this Satan-praising Pope
This guy is in charge of culture for the Vatican.
Paul Tighe (born 12 February 1958) is an Irish prelate of the Catholic Church. He has been the Secretary of the Pontifical Council for Culture since his appointment on 28 October 2017. He is the highest-ranking Irishman in the Roman Curia
In her talk, Maid Marian says “cellphones don’t work” and “the Internet is left behind”. Isn’t it a cardinal sin to lie in front of a bishop?
They still seem to have no idea what they are going to do with FlySalen. It’s coming up on 2 years now since they bought it. Is there some secret stuff going on out there, which isn’t being shared with the Burner community? Radical Rituals of some sort?
The biggest individual contributions to Fly Ranch were: $1,750,000 , $1,500,000, $999,965, $500,000. Some big backers there – can we match the name with the money? Elon? Sergey? Guy from Cirque do Soleil? Geomagician Ping Fu got a board seat, so presumably she wrote a pretty big check. Which one of these high rolling Billionaire Burners stiffed them on the $35 wire transfer fee?
They received $171,000 in land and $489,915 in marketable securities – that “donate us your stock options program” looks to have been a lucrative move.
One name that stood out to me on the Donors list was Amanda Sackler. You may have read about her family in Esquire Secretive Family Making Billions From The Opioid Crisis , the New Yorker Family That Built an Empire of Pain or my favorite from Dr Mercola Meet The Sacklers – The Family That’s Killing Millions (Maybe More Than Stalin)
…more than 200,000 killed so far this century, but hey, at least we got a donation.
Congratulations to Marian and team for delivering an excellent financial result. Costs trimmed, sales up. A well oiled and greased machine. How much trickled out into grants, which of course mostly went to the same old same old (shout out to newcomer Plug-n-Play LLC?)
“In 2016, $78,250 was awarded to 17 global projects.”