Financial & performance summary
Landgate remains in a sound financial position despite the 2015/16 financial result being significantly impacted by the subdued property market. Property market activity fell by approximately 10 per cent compared to the previous year, and overall revenue was well below initial expectations. Management’s continued focus on reforming to achieve greater efficiency in the delivery of services has enabled a positive return to the state for 2015/16.
Landgate’s $6.8m gross profit was below budget as a consequence of the weaker Western Australian economy impacting property market activity. The final outcome was positive despite the difficult trading conditions, with expenditure being tightly managed and ongoing savings delivered through Landgate’s reform program.
Customer revenue of $123.7m is primarily driven by activity in the state’s property market. This year’s result was 3.8 per cent below last year, with overall revenue finishing 10.3 per cent below target.
Landgate’s net assets have decreased slightly to $200.7m, compared to $201.4m the previous year. The lower cash balance was due to lower profit, capital expenditure and a further investment in PEXA Ltd. The position was partially offset by a reduction in liabilities (lease liability and staff leave entitlements).
Capital expenditure for the year totalled $23.1m. This investment supports initiatives such as e-conveyancing, Landgate’s business improvement program Transform, the development of new systems, reforms to the Strata Titles Act 1985 and improving the quality and accessibility of location information across agencies and industry.
Gross profit ($m)
Landgate delivered a gross profit of $6.8m which was below expectations due to revenue being impacted from subdued activity in the property market. However, expenditure finished the year below budget despite incurring additional costs to deliver Landgate’s strategic business reform program which will result in future salary savings.
Net assets ($m)
Our net assets
Landgate’s net assets declined marginally to $200.7m, mainly as a result of the flow on impact on profit from the weaker property market. Landgate’s net asset base is in a very sound financial position allowing for the continuing investment in the efficient delivery of services and further diversification and enhancement of products and services available to the community.
Landgate continues to proactively manage expenditure and finished the year 2.7 per cent below budget. This result was despite absorbing a higher than expected share of the operating loss in its equity investment in PEXA Ltd, and incurring one-off costs related to delivering reform initiatives that will realise long-term cost savings. These items contributed to the 6.9 per cent increase in overall expenditure compared to the previous financial year.
Landgate’s operating revenue was below target by 10.3 per cent and down on the previous year. The subdued property market impacted paid document registration and search activity levels which fell by 9.8 per cent and 11.4 per cent respectively compared to the previous year. Valuations revenue exceeded the target and the service appropriation received from the state government was comparable to the previous financial year.
Average cost per land registration action
Land registration actions
Land registration actions involve activities associated with registering land and property transactions including document search requests and lots created. The actual average cost per land registration action for this financial year was $40.51 which was 10.8 per cent above target. This was due to the subdued property market that led to a 13.8 per cent reduction in the expected number of land registrations actions, although this was partially offset by a reduction in related service delivery costs.
Average cost per land information action
Land information actions
Land information actions involve activities associated with the capture, production and maintenance of physical and land boundary datasets. The actual average cost per land information action for this financial year was $23.36 which was 3 per cent below target. This was due to lower total costs to deliver this service as a result of Landgate’s tight expenditure control, partially offset by the number of actions ending the year 1.6 per cent below target.
Average cost per valuation
Valuations completed include unimproved and gross rental valuations; interim valuations; stamp duty, asset and market valuations; objections, appeals and queries made during the financial year; and general property related valuation consultancy services. The actual average cost per valuation of $18.12 was 7.5 per cent above target. This was mainly due to a revised allocation resulting in a greater share of indirect and overhead costs for this service and higher costs as part of the transition to a new business operating model. This was partially offset by the number of completed valuations exceeding target by 2.6 per cent.
Average cost of coordinating the Capture WA Program per request for capture
Coordinated capture of the state’s location information
Requests for the capture of location information are received from agencies participating in the program. The program is designed to reduce cost and avoid duplication in the capture of location information across the state. The actual average cost of $3,584 for coordinating the program for capture was significantly lower than target due to the higher than expected number of requests received for capture together with reduced costs in delivering the program.
Average cost per pages viewed of information delivered through SLIP
Coordinated access to the state’s location information
The Shared Location Information Program (SLIP) provides a single point of access for whole of government and industry partners to use and share location information. The aim of SLIP is to reduce the effort required to make data available and ensure it is the most cost effective solution to deliver location information to users. For 2015/16, the method of measuring the information delivered through SLIP changed to pages viewed (from gigabytes delivered), although the intent behind this measure remains unchanged. The actual average delivery cost (per page view) of data through SLIP was $0.53 compared to the target of $0.83. This positive result was due to lower costs and the number of pages viewed exceeding target. As this measure is derived from a new baseline figure for the volume of data consumed for 2015/16, there is no comparative information available and future performance will be measured from this baseline.