COGECO Inc. should be commended for creating this unique independent fund, first with an original capital endowment of $5 million designed to provide sustainable funding for program development over time, and subsequently with substantial annual contributions from its cable subsidiary Cogeco Communications Inc., now totalling $42,315,202 in the aggregate, which has allowed funding for program production as well.
This past year also marked a full review of the CRTC’s regulatory policies governing Certified Independent Production Funds (CIPFs). The CRTC’s revised policy provides for various requirements respecting the independence, governance and reporting of CIPFs. As in previous years, this latest annual report from the Cogeco Program Development Fund provides detailed information on its activities as well as audited financial statements and other information needed to understand and appreciate its independence, its governance and its funding decisions, all in keeping with the CRTC’s policies in effect.
Like others in the program funding environment, our Fund must now cope with lower returns from its capital endowment fund on the financial markets, as well as declining annual contributions from the broadcasting distribution sector due to the structural changes affecting the domestic distribution market. As a result, the Board of Directors will be conducting this year a review of its current programs with a view to ensuring their efficiency and sustainability in the future.
I wish to thank the directors, the members of the selection committee and staff for contributing their time and expertise in support of our Fund’s activities.