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Improving lives by solving problems in agriculture and the environment


After many years of consistent growth, 2017 was a demanding year for CABI financially with a slow first half of the year for income generation leading to an overall decline in revenue for the full year. Total sales and project income at £33,358k (2016: £34,850k) reduced by 4% in 2017 with declines in project revenue from both the Knowledge Business and International Development. However, publishing product sales grew by 7% driven by a mix of organic growth and foreign exchange. International Development project revenue declined after many years of continuous growth as a result of some delays in donor funding. However, additional contract income secured for major programmes in the second half of 2017, together with significant funding committed for work to be led by the CABI office in Pakistan, means the prospects for growth in International Development in 2018 are good.

At the end of March 2017, the charity SciDev.Net was acquired by CABI. SciDev.Net was formed 16 years ago and is widely recognised as a world leading source of original news and analysis on scientific evidence and technological innovation for global development. It has established brand recognition for independent journalism in the development sector. The acquisition has created opportunities for CABI to grow and develop capabilities in the development communications sector and in 2017, over the nine months operating as part of CABI, SciDev.Net contributed £561k of income and a £50k surplus to the consolidated financial performance. Significant revenue growth is anticipated in 2018 and beyond.

Total Operating surplus decreased in 2017 to £459k (2016: £652k) although the prior year financial performance was boosted by significant foreign exchange gains arising from the post-Brexit weakening of the British pound. Looking to 2018, a return to income growth is anticipated driven by the strong pipeline for CABI’s major programmes and projects.

The UK Defined Benefit Scheme pension deficit remains a major financial challenge for the organisation and has required increasing contributions to be made by CABI. The results of the next formal valuation, taken as of 31 December 2017, will become available in 2018 and an increase in the deficit is highly probable. In its approach to the UK pension deficit, it remains the case that the CABI Board continues to balance the need to manage this long term (estimated) liability while continuing to invest in growth and the delivery of objectives set out in the Medium Term plan.

Robert Sloley

Chief Financial Officer

Statement of comprehensive income

for the year ended 31 December

  2017 2016 
  £'000 £'000
continuing operations    
sales and project income 33,358   34,850 
member contributions 1,303  1,303 
CABITAX recovery 1,248  1,310 
miscellaneous income 51  74 
  35,960  37,537 
staff costs (9,945)  (9,709) 
direct project costs (17,465)  (19,548) 
production (3,321)  (3,176) 
facilities and maintenance (1,697)  (1,645) 
sales and distribution (632)  (531) 
travel (702)  (768) 
depreciation and leasehold amortization (882)  (825) 
consultants, freelancers (567)  (429) 
restructuring costs (171)  (248) 
provision for arrears of member country contributions 27  (99) 
associated company profit 189  69 
course of construction impairment 441  (441) 
other costs (781)  411 
  (35,506)  (36,939) 
operating surplus / (deficit) before interest 454  598 
interest receivable 54 
operating surplus / (deficit) for the year 459  652 
other comprehensive income / (deficit) items that may be subsequently
reclassified to operating surplus / (deficit)
cash flow hedges 342  (157) 
movement between funds (100)  (100) 
other losses on defined benefit pension schemes (9,917)  (36,045) 
  (9,675)  (36,302) 
total comprehensive deficit for the year (9,216)  (35,650) 

Statement of financial position

for the year ended 31 December

  £'000 £'000
non-current assets    
land and buildings 12,430  12,144 
plant and equipment 1,592  1,789 
intangibles  555 577 
intangibles - goodwill 113 -
investments accounted for using the equity method 727  537 
  15,417  15,047 
current assets    
inventories 1,195  1,755 
trade and other receivables, net of provisions:    
– sales receivables 2,593  2,736 
– sums owing by project sponsors 3,543  2,016 
– from member countries 222 
other financial assets:    
- derivative financial asset 86 -
– cash and cash equivalents 6,481  7,104 
other receivables 1,273  1,086 
  15,393  14,697 
total assets 30,810  29,744 
equity and liabilities    
revaluation reserve (4,225) (4,255) 
cash flow hedges (86)  256 
designated fund (100)  (100) 
accumulated deficit 96,637  87,079 
total equity 92,196  82,980 
non-current liabilities    
post-employment benefits (108,271)  (98,354) 
  (108,271)  (98,354) 
current liabilities    
sales income received in advance (3,859)  (3,790) 
member contributions in advance (9)  (7) 
sums held on behalf of project sponsors (7,131)  (7,401) 
trade and other payables:    
– trade payables (1,590)  (1,007) 
– other payables (2,146)   (1,909)  
other financial liabilities    
– derivative financial liability - (256) 
  (14,735)  (14,370) 
total liabilities (123,006)  (112,724) 
total equity and liabilities (30,810)  (29,744) 

Statement of cash flows

for the year ended 31 December

operating surplus before interest  

  £'000 £'000
cash flows from operating activities    
cash (used in) / generated from continuing operations 436  (2,980) 
net cash (used in ) / generated from operating activities 436  (2,980) 
cash flows from investing activities:    
payments to acquire tangible fixed assets (903)  (595) 
payments to acquire intangible assets (48)  (215) 
interest received 54 
acquisition of subsidiary, goodwill (113)  -
net cash used in investing activities (1,059)  (756) 
net decrease in cash and cash equivalents (623)  (3,736) 
(i) reconciliation of operating surplus to net cash inflow from operating activities    
operating surplus before interest 354 448
depreciation charges 882  825 
share of associated company (profits) (189) (69)
loss on disposal of property, plant, equipment
decrease in inventories 560  10
increase in trade and other receivables (1,606) (1,059)
increase/(decrease) in trade and other payables 820 (789) 
decrease in income in advance (199) (2,974)
(increase)/decrease in other receivables (188)  628 
cash generated/(used in) from continuing operations 436 (2,980) 
(ii) movement in net cash during the year    
net cash at 1 January 7,104  10,840 
net cash at 31 December 6,481  7,104 
movement in net cash during the year (623) (3,736)