The Wikimedia Foundation has submitted our annual Form 990 for the Fiscal
Year 2019-20 to the US Internal Revenue Service
<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internal_Revenue_Service> (IRS) and posted
on-wiki. The Form 990 is the annual financial reporting, known as an
“information return,” which the IRS requires nonprofit organizations in the
United States to file.
In addition to posting the Form 990 on-wiki, we have also posted an
accompanying page with answers to frequently asked questions related to the
form and information we reported.
Here are a few key highlights on this year’s Form 990:
- The Wikimedia Foundation's total revenue for fiscal year
2019-2020 was US $124.6 million. Our total expenses during this period were
US $112.2 million and our total net assets at the end of the fiscal year
were US $180.3 million.
- At the end of our fiscal year 2019-2020, our revenue exceeded our
expenses by US $12.5 million, which increased our operating reserve to
$179.7 million, or the equivalent of 19-20 months of expenses per the
fiscal year 2020-2021 annual plan
As reported under our prior Form 990, we have been maintaining the
operating reserve at 17-18 months. Our goal is to have sufficient reserve
funds to conservatively provide at least 12-18 months of operating expenses
in order to mitigate against unforeseen risk, secure operational stability,
and ensure the overall financial health of the organization, in particular,
with the COVID-19 pandemic which brings a significant amount of volatility
and uncertainty for a majority of businesses, including non-profit
organizations. This principle is consistent with many other financially
stable, non-profit organizations that are rated by Charity Navigator
<https://www.charitynavigator.org/>. With a stable and secure reserve, we
have the ability to fund specific Wikimedia Movement investment
opportunities that may arise.
- During the fiscal year 2019-2020, we continued to experience
growth in our fundraising revenue and success that was attributed to our
- We continue to invest in programmatic activities and evaluate to
ensure that our allocation percentage is at or above the standard benchmark
of 65%. During the fiscal year 2019-2020, we invested 75% in programmatic
activities, 14% in Management & General activities, and 11% in fundraising
activities. For fiscal year 2020-2021, we continued to maintain our
commitment to our programmatic activities and projected to invest above the
standard benchmark in our total spending.
- Our expenses increased due to the investment to support our
medium term plan and priorities, that are outlined in the Annual Plan
The major programmatic areas are to evolve our systems and structures and
to grow new contributors and content along with supporting a thriving
movement and global advocacy.
- Our Governance, Management, and Disclosure practices are
committed to maintaining best practices for non-profit charitable
organizations, we’ve achieved a score of 100% from Charity Navigator for
our accountability and transparency and meet the IRS requirements as
Through reports and discussions like these, the Wikimedia Foundation will
continue to strive to provide a responsible level of transparency and
accountability. I imagine there are other questions, and I invite you to
review the on-wiki FAQ, or post your questions on the discussion page
should you have any.
Thank you to the Foundation's Audit Committee for their oversight and our
Staff for their work in developing this year's Form 990 and related
communications for filing and public disclosure.
Best Regards and Be Well,
 - https://wikimediafoundation.org/about/financial-reports/
Chief Financial Officer
Wikimedia Foundation <https://wikimediafoundation.org/>
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