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Annual Report

Financial snapshot

Consolidated financial statements

Clean audit opinion from the external auditors

We are pleased that the university received an unmodified opinion from our external auditors for the consolidated financial statements. These statements present fairly the financial position of the university as of April 30, 2021 and are in accordance with the Canadian accounting standards for not-for-profit organizations.

The consolidated audited financial statements reflect an excess of revenues over expenses of $14.8 million. This includes all restricted and unrestricted activities of the university.

Operating fund

The operating fund includes only the unrestricted operations of the university.

The 2021 operating budget as initially prepared was structurally balanced, positioning the university to be able to work towards implementing its bold new vision of growth. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, an alternate plan was developed allowing UNB to withstand the financial challenges presented by the pandemic.

The budget implemented by the university included some strategic spending reductions. This helped minimize the impact of the pandemic on UNB’s core teaching and research mission. Internally restricted net assets were used to offset $13.6 million in revenue losses resulting from reduced enrolment and residence closures.

We invested in technology and training for faculty to enable alternate teaching delivery methods to ensure that students’ studies were not interrupted as a result of the pandemic. Additionally, investments were made to provide an extra layer of protection to ensure the university community was safe during the pandemic. Together, all of these efforts reduced a potential budget deficit of $17.8 million to $2.4 million.

The actual results were better than budgeted. Enrolments declined less than expected. This along with a few other variances resulted in a net deficit of $2.3 million.

Capital assets

UNB has continued to focus on the renewal, modernization and expansion of its residence system. This will support anticipated enrolment growth as we implement UNB Toward 2030 with new academic programs. Residence capacity on the Saint John campus increased with the opening of the Barry and Flora Beckett Residence in January 2021. Residence renewal on the Fredericton campus eliminated $10 million in accumulated deferred maintenance, resetting the three buildings to “new” condition.

Trust and endowment fund

Trust and endowment assets increased in 2020-2021 by $46.6 million to $380.7 million.

The increase is due to:

Donations and other contributions $13.6M
Investment earnings $63.2M
Spending ($30.2M)

The Trust and Endowment Fund rebounded with returns of 18.69 per cent in 2020-2021 as worldwide equity markets rallied following the negative impacts of COVID-19 in the prior year.

The fund earned sufficient investment earnings to cover 2020-2021 spending and recoup the amount used from the spending reserve in the prior year. In years where investment returns are in excess of what is required to meet spending requirements, inflation protection and administrative costs, the excess is considered a “reserve.” The reserves are drawn down in years when investment returns are less than what is needed to meet those same requirements. As of April 30, 2021, the university has $55.4 million set aside in the spending reserve fund.

Approximately $8.0 million (26 per cent of spending from the endowment fund) was disbursed in 2020-21 for student awards, which represents 61 per cent of total university spending for student awards.