In the past year we witnessed a halting and fragile recovery from the global recession, plagued by persistently high levels of unemployment, weak investment opportunities and mounting budget deficits that will haunt us for years to come. Earthquakes, drought, flooding and wildfires captured headlines from Haiti, China, Pakistan, Russia and many other countries, creating untold hardship for millions of people caught in the wake. Escalating warfare and insecurity in Afghanistan, Pakistan and a host of other countries threatened the well-being and livelihoods of millions of poor families and diminished prospects for peaceful solutions. And, the threat of global pandemics again reared its head this year, reminding us that disease is not confined by political boundaries.
In the midst of so much depressing news, wherein does our hope lie? At MEDA we have the daily privilege of witnessing the incredible resilience of the human spirit – watching as resource‑poor families around the world respond with creativity, entrepreneurship and unflagging efforts to build their lives and create hope for their families in the midst of destruction and insecurity. We see millions of families who, with a hand from MEDA, are able to unleash their own entrepreneurship to build a better future. We believe that unleashing entrepreneurship is our God‑given mandate, and a proven strategy for creating sustainable livelihoods. Since 1953, MEDA has created business solutions to poverty, building on the entrepreneurship of our 101 partners and 9.4 million clients around the world. Today, our work is needed more than ever. Do we have the creative, scalable and replicable business solutions needed to help increasing numbers of the world's poor find roads out of poverty? Our funding partners clearly believe that we do. Over the past three years, with the help of funding contracts negotiated with
governments and foundations, our total development budgets have more than doubled, and our client reach has more than quadrupled.
We were delighted that, despite ongoing economic uncertainty, 2010 was a year of continued growth for MEDA. Contributions from our generous private supporters increased 36% to $3.3 million, multiplied by government contracts and other funding by a factor of 10 times, for total revenue of $32.8 million, up 31% from last year.
Our newly opened European office accounted for nearly 7% of contributions. In June the MEDA board of directors was privileged to be hosted in Germany by Horsch Machinery and director Michael Horsch – following our triennial international board meetings, held this year in Ukraine where the board witnessed entrepreneurship alive and well in this former Soviet state.
The board also approved MEDA's next three‑year strategy (outlined in the center‑spread of this report) and a major organizational restructuring that will position MEDA for global leadership in each of its strategic directions. As part of the reorganization, MEDA's impact investment mandate is now managed by its wholly‑owned subsidiary, Sarona Asset Management Inc. Assets in the Sarona Risk Capital Fund increased 30% to $14.8 million, private direct investment in MEDA programs increased 58% to $30 million, and assets under management increased 25% to $219 million.
Our net surplus of $1.1 million resulted from a $1.29 million appreciation in the value of our Sarona Risk Capital Fund investments and a $197,000 operating deficit. Most of these funds will be reinvested again and again in businesses that serve the poor.
And finally, at a time when many of our 313 staff members face insecurity and other risks on a daily basis, we have worked intentionally with our security consultant to improve security training and other protective measures. However, we covet your prayers for their safety.
We are immensely grateful to our supporters and our board who generously share their time, skills and resources to help MEDA unleash entrepreneurship. We invite you to join in this work.
Allan Sauder, President
Allon Lefever, Chair