The Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) has insisted its finances are "strong", despite reporting losses of more than £1 million last year.
The “planned” loss in 2014 was part of an “upfront investment” in digital publishing products, finance director Simon Redman told members at the RPS’s annual general meeting on Wednesday (June 24).
The society had also “budgeted for a loss of £1.2m” in 2015 and knew it had to “spend money before we can recover it and get returns”, he said. It was still “well-positioned to return to profitability within the next few years”, Mr Redman stressed.
The society had set itself “ambitious” growth targets for the products it had invested in last year, but these had proved “premature to achieve”, Mr Redman said. The RPS had "offset" this by controlling costs, he added.
Mr Redman said the society had retained 93 per cent of members into 2015, and RPS treasurer Sid Dajani stressed it was in a “stronger position” financially than it had been when it split from the General Pharmaceutical Council in 2011. “There have been no nasty surprises to throw us off our strategic aims,” he told members.
“A premier home for pharmacy”
The RPS also used its meeting to showcase its new headquarters near Tower Hill, London, which it plans to move into next Monday (June 29). Mr Redman told members that the 28,000 square feet of office space had been bought for £6m, with a further £7.5m invested in refurbishing the “vibrant office space”.
Mr Dajani told members that the RPS had “rightly invested in a premier home for pharmacy”. The new headquarters had been funded from the sale of the organisation’s former offices in Lambeth, and the RPS expected to save £500,000 a year in running costs as a result of the move, he added.
Last year, the RPS announced net profits of £47,000 in 2013, its second consecutive year of profitability following losses in 2011 and 2012.