2023 will mark the 30th anniversary of the Silicon Valley Bicycle Exchange.
Our volunteers deserve credit for our extraordinary accomplishments. We have donated over 8000 bicycles while being consistently cash flow positive.
We have always lived below our means while maintaining the vision that we will someday anchor ourselves in a building that we own. Our long tenure reflects a fiscal soundness that is necessary for any charity to give generously.
The recent closure of Cupertino Bike Shop provides a cogent reminder of the critical importance of owning a building. Many of you remember our own move from Leghorn Street to Bayshore Road. Recall that our very existence was placed at risk when we lost our lease. We are delighted and lucky to find and lease our current shop space. Such opportunities are not guaranteed in the future.
Our sister shop, the Santa Cruz Bicycle Exchange, was forced to shut down in 2020 when the new property owner evicted them. The Santa Cruz operation, like ours in Silicon Valley, was consistently cash flow positive; unfortunately, that was insufficient.
How have we saved historically? In 2018, we grew our treasury by about $90,000 and, in 2019, by another $75,000. With our new lease secured in 2019, we hired staff late that year. Our savings are our homelessness insurance policy. The board unanimously approved classifying 90% of the SVBE treasury as its Building Fund.
An important financial and cultural goal has been to continue growing our treasury. We're proud that we've done this before hiring staff, and continued to do so even after hiring two employees. This has been no small achievement and is a credit to Andrew, our Executive Director, and Gregg, our Shop Manager.
Our 2022 goal of donating 1000 bikes is more ambitious than ever, and compromises our savings goals as Andrew and Gregg make tradeoffs between donations and sales.
We know many of you enjoy our community and that you donate many hours of your time with us each year. Another way to support our community is through a financial gift. This year, the board has organized its first-ever matching gift program. Your gift in November 2022 is particularly valuable in ensuring that we can continue expanding our programs and that the Bicycle Exchange is here for at least another 30 years.
-The BikeX Board