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Heritage institutions 2010

December 11, 201211 December 2012

Visual arts and heritage organizations

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Statistics Canada recently released summary data on heritage institutions in 2010, including for-profit and not-for-profit heritage organizations such as art galleries, museums, historic sites, zoos and botanical gardens. Organizations that are part of a larger institution, such as university-affiliated art galleries, are excluded from the heritage institutions survey.

In 2010, as in other even-numbered years, only summary data are provided. For example, no data are available regarding attendance levels or revenue sources (i.e., earned, public, or private sector). Hill Strategies has analyzed the 2010 data for this issue of the Arts Research Monitor. Note: The changes reported below have not been adjusted for inflation.

The total operating revenues of all heritage organizations were $1.3 billion in 2010, a 3.4% increase from 2009. Total operating expenditures were $1.2 billion, leaving a small surplus of 3.1% of total revenues. The largest component of heritage organizations’ expenditures were staff salaries, wages and benefits ($576 million, or 46% of total expenditures). Total expenditures increased by 2.8% between 2009 and 2010, while spending on salaries, wages and benefits increased by 4.5%.

Not-for-profit heritage organizations in Canada had total revenues of $1.2 billion in 2010, representing 92% of the sectoral total. Total revenues of not-for-profit heritage organizations increased by 3.8% between 2009 and 2010. Total expenses ($1.2 billion) essentially equalled total revenues, resulting in a small surplus of 2.3% of total revenues.

The key data for each type of not-for-profit heritage organization in 2010 follow:

  • Not-for-profit museums (other than art galleries) had total revenues of $633 million in 2010, a 3.0% increase from 2009. Collectively, museums reported an $18 million surplus in 2010 (2.9% of revenues).
  • Not-for-profit art galleries had total revenues of $290 million in 2010, a 5.1% increase from the previous year. Canadian art galleries reported a $2.6 million surplus in 2010 (0.9% of revenues).
  • Not-for-profit zoos and botanical gardens reported total revenues of $166 million in 2010, a 5.0% increase from 2009. Zoos and botanical gardens reported a $3.9 million surplus (2.4% of revenues).
  • Not-for-profit historic and heritage sites had revenues totalling $89 million in 2010, a 3.1% increase from 2009. Historic and heritage sites reported a $1.8 million surplus in 2010 (2.1% of revenues).

On a provincial basis, Ontario-based not-for-profit heritage organizations accounted for $466 million in revenues (40% of the Canadian total). The revenues of Quebec-based organizations totalled $334 million in 2010 (28% of the Canadian total). British Columbia-based non-profit organizations had operating revenues of $129 million (11% of national revenues), while their Alberta counterparts accounted for $120 million (10%).

There are relatively few for-profit heritage organizations in Canada. The total revenues of for-profit heritage organizations were $104 million in 2010, representing 8% of the sectoral total and a 1.5% decrease from 2009. Despite the decrease, for-profit heritage organizations earned an average profit margin of 12.4%. Ontario’s for-profit heritage organizations had revenues of $51 million (49% of the national total), while for-profit organizations based in British Columbia generated revenues of $37 million (36%).

The Statistics Canada tables also contain information about the revenues, expenses, and surplus or deficit situation of heritage organizations in other provinces (but not the three territories), although the breakdown into for-profit and not-for-profit organizations is not provided for New Brunswick, Manitoba, or Saskatchewan due to confidentiality concerns.

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