Prior to 2014, the Bay Area Anarchist Bookfair had been organized and sponsored by Bound Together Books in San Francisco, who also provided the insurance for the event and paid the deposit for the venue (to be reimbursed from vendor fees). In the past few years, the Bookfair has either broken even financially or lost some money, which was covered by Bound Together.
For 2014, a new group came together and organized the Bookfair without this financial backing, and starting with no funds from the previous years. To provide the venue deposit, we borrowed $1,000 from one of our members (paid back later from vendor fees) and contracted with an independent broker to provide the insurance. Most venues require a special event insurance certificate covering up to $1 million in damages.
Because of the new venue and new organizing group, we planned conservatively because we didn’t know if vendors would support the new group and the new venue, and didn’t know if we would cover our expenses. This was one of the reasons for changing the event from two days back to one day. As a group, we agreed to cover any deficit, but we also considered scaling back the event even further to save money if we didn’t have a good response from people reserving tables.
We offered tables for $95 to $150 for vendors, and $15 to $35 for organizations distributing literature and not selling. We were pleasantly surprised that many groups paid at the higher end of the scale, which made it possible for us both to cover all of our expenses and provide free/reduced cost tables to some groups and organizations, including many Bay Area groups focusing on gentrification and displacement.
Our main expenses were renting the venue, renting tables and chairs, and printing posters/postcards. All of our expenses are detailed below.
Through some good luck, we ended up with $1500 left after all expenses were paid. We had anticipated spending about $500 on renting A/V equipment, but one of our collective members arranged to have these donated a few days before the event. In addition, we thought we were going to have to pay around $1000 for private security, but ended up providing security with volunteers (though it is likely we will need to pay for private security next year). Also, most of the photocopying of the schedule/program was donated by individuals. Had these things not happened, we would have broken even or lost money.
Everyone who works on the committee is a volunteer, and all speakers/presenters donated their time to make this event happen.
The $1500 remaining from this year will go toward paying the rental deposit on the 2015 venue, so we won’t need to borrow money this year. It is our hope that one day the Bookfair will be in a strong enough financial position to reimburse some travel for speakers.
If you have any questions about the finances for the 2014 Bay Area Anarchist Book Fair, please contact the committee at email@example.com.
Jen A, Matt L, Megan O, Mike E
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2014 Book Fair Financial Statement
Vendor fees: $7197.00
Donation from the Anarchist Café: $246.00
Total Income: $7443.00
Venue Rental: $2500
Table/Chair/Tent rental: $2304.50
Poster Design: $300
Poster/postcard printing: $476
Credit card processing fees: $142.01
Misc. (postage, office supplies, some photo copies): $66.50
Total expenses: $5974.01