University of Vermont

Burlington,

Alumni Center Financial Analysis And Benchmarking Analysis

In 2009 the University of Vermont selected B&D and Ann Beha Architects to develop a financial model for the proposed development and alumni relations facility. The intent of this assignment was to understand opportunities associated with the project, and the extent to which revenues could be generated to offset its operating expenses. The architects developed a program that included seven spaces to accommodate a variety of functions and events such as small meetings, conferences, banquets, and social receptions. We then examined the types and number of events that could be supported by the proposed facility. We analyzed the types and spaces currently available on campus and the rates that were charged for externally-run events. In addition, interviews were conducted with campus representatives to understand demand for externally-run events and issues that would impact success. The objective of the resulting financial model was to identify the parameters to be achieved to create a financially sustainable operating scenario. We developed scenarios that would provide sufficient and realistic revenue opportunities based on the proposed facility program. Our financial model included an examination of operating scenarios and membership opportunities and the establishment of an operating endowment that would cover potential revenue shortfalls. We also identified opportunities to generate additional revenue, including corporate sponsorships, merchandise sales, and advertising. In addition, we conducted benchmarking of comparable alumni centers to assess operating scenarios and costs associated with construction.