UCD Students’ Union Company Limited by Guarantee is in a financial position where “there is a material uncertainty related to events or conditions that may cast significant doubt on the entity’s ability to continue as a going concern”, according to its latest Abridged Financial Statements for the year ended 30 June 2019.
The UCD Students’ Union Company Limited by Guarantee (“the company”), which is the main operational body of the UCDSU, released its Abridged Financial Statements in late June, posting a surplus of €58,219. The auditors of the company, McInerney Saunders, reported that “the company will remain in operational existence for the foreseeable future”, albeit being reliant on income from its trading subsidiary (UCDSU Commercial Services Limited) to return the company to a surplus. Indeed, the company saw a dividend payment of €200,000 this financial year from its subsidiary, UCDSU Commercial Services Limited, of which it is the sole shareholder.
“Notwithstanding this impact, the directors project no income in the next twelve months from the subsidiary company.”
Since the end of their financial year, the global outbreak of Covid-19 has led to a serious shrink in universities’ incomes. “Notwithstanding this impact, the directors project no income in the next twelve months from the subsidiary company, they are satisfied that the company can continue its operations for the foreseeable future as a result of tight cost control measures being undertaken such as the cancellation of all non-essential expenditure and the postponement of any further staff hiring”. The entity is facing tough financial times ahead. The company may be “unable to realise its assets and discharge its liabilities in the normal course of business”, writes their auditors. Although it seems feasible for the company to remain operational, the UCDSU will have to closely monitor their financial situation throughout the year.
Moving away from UCD Students’ Union Company Limited by Guarantee, its trading subsidiary UCDSU Commercial Services Limited also released its Abridged Financial Statements in late June. The company posted a loss for the financial year of €21,566. As aforementioned, the company also paid a dividend of €200,000 to its parent company (UCD Students’ Union Company Limited by Guarantee) to keep it profitable. According to the auditors (also McInerney Saunders), “in the opinion of the directors, there are significant risks and uncertainties facing the company at this time due to the outbreak of the COVI D-19 pandemic since the financial year-end and the serious impact that this pandemic may have on the global economy and the company’s business”.
UCDSU’s companies are already feeling the economic slowdown ensuing Covid-19. Despite their year-ends being 30 June 2019, the auditors, in their reports, have recognised that the future is uncertain for both of the SU’s entities.
The UCDSU has yet to respond to our requests for comment.
Alex Lohier – Former Deputy Editor
Additional reporting from Brigid Molloy