Hey folks - we are so pleased to have some movement of funds at last! You've been so amazing! Thanks for sticking with us on this!!!
So... a significant, but by no means complete, amount of money has been returned to us from the insurance provider which means (and this is important to note) that by topping this amount up with our cash reserves, we can now begin the ticket refund process! (We promise we are not jumping the gun this time - it's really happening!)
So what's happening?
If you're in the majority of people who bought a ticket direct from the ticket provider (Quicket) you'll receive an email from Quicket in the next few days confirming the refund has been sent back to the account from which it came. As usual with electronic funds transfers, the refund will likely take 3-5 business days to land in your account, so please remain patient 🙂
Approximately 5-10% of ticket holders will have circumstances that require manual processing i.e. you bought tickets from someone else (ticket transfer) or the bank account/credit card you purchased with has closed. We need to be rigorous in making sure we direct these manual refunds correctly so these will take a little longer and we will need you to work with us.
We are committed to clearing all refunds as quickly as possible and your patience is appreciated if you are in this group. We will contact anyone who we cannot refund directly.
Please see the ticket refund FAQ for full details and instructions on how we need to handle these refunds.
What are the “cash reserves”?
OK this is really important. Some of you may be asking "What? Reserve cash? Why didn't you pay us out of that before?"
Well, Burning Seed has been been working hard to put away a small amount of money each year to allow for pre-production costs that grow as the event grows, as well for unforeseeable circumstances like the proverbial “very rainy day”...
The cash we had in reserve alone wouldn't have been anywhere near enough for us to pay everyone back their refunds immediately. So we're using the portion of the insurance that has been returned to us together with what we have saved over the years to cover the cost of the refund. It's cleaned us out folks!
We're banking on the rest of the insurance monies coming in soon and of course we are banking on YOU wanting to come back to Seed in 2017!!
Using the savings was no small decision to make. We've thought long and hard about this. We considered staggering the refund process - that is, somehow prioritising refunds with what money we had received from the insurers.
But honestly this would have been an incredibly messy and potentially divisive approach. How would we choose who got refunded first? Too messy - that's why we've been pushing so hard for the insurance monies.
Everyone is a priority and we feel the right thing to do is what we've done - to wait until we had enough in the bank from the insurance to refund everyone's ticket.
But don't you need the reserves?
Well, yes of course we do. But with the portion of the insurance we've received and the reserves we have we're able (just) to cover the cost of all ticket refunds and we feel that's the priority right now.
It will mean that we cannot make any purchases until we have the rest of the insurance money in, and until we open ticket sales for 2017 (look out for this soon).
Another really important reason why we are using the reserve cash is to do with tax. Our tax year ends 31 March- like TODAY! Although we haven't received all the insurance money, there is a significant sum sitting in our account and if it stays there we could be liable for a pretty massive tax bill which would put us even further behind.
It's a no brainer. It's a much bigger risk for Seed to bear these tax costs and wait for the remainder of the insurance monies before we start the refunds than it is to deplete the cash reserve and get the payments to you underway. However, this is still a risk and it does leave us in a pretty precarious financial position.
How much has been returned and how much used from the reserve cash?
We'll break it all down for you in the regular annual financial statement which will be published in the next month or so once we've finalised the refunds and had time to do the work to complete the accounts.
OK we know you have more questions - check out the ticket refund FAQ we have prepared which should hopefully answer most of them - if not then please email firstname.lastname@example.org and we'll do our best to help.
Once again folks - thank you so much for being such a cool crew. This kind of stuff can test any community in terms of their resolve, resilience and willingness to stick together and just wow did you pass with all the colours. We really love you for that.