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February 4, 2022

How the American Chemistry Council Spends Revenue

by Anne Paddock

The American Chemistry Council (ACC) is a tax-exempt, non-profit trade association (501 (c) 6) that represents 160 member companies (although the organization’s website claims 190) that produce or sell chemistry products in the US and abroad.  Based in Washington, DC, the ACC is managed by 52 independent voting members (board members) of the governing body, of which 46 (88%) are male, 6 (12%) are female. ACC also controls a foundation and a PAC (political action committee).

ACC raised $130 million in 2019 with most revenue from membership dues ($90 million) and Chemtrec Registration Fees (Chemtrec is a 24/7 public service for emergency responders for emergency incidents involving chemicals. SDS (Safety Data Sheet) authors pay a fee to Chemtrec) of $23 million.  The remaining revenue ($17 million) comes from OH Reimbursement (from who is not stated), product sales, meetings and seminars, sponsorships, investment income and gains.

Expenses have historically been closely matched to revenue although ACC has managed to obtain $60 million in net assets, through unrealized gains on investments and from spending slightly less than the organization raised year-to-year.  In 2019, total revenue was $130 million (compared to $128 million in 2018, $123 million in 2017, and $121 million in 2016).

Expenses totaled $128 million in 2019, categorized as follows:

  • $52 million (or 40% of revenue):  Compensation
  • $31 million (or 24% of revenue):  Fees for Services (primarily consulting)
  • $14 million (or 11% of revenue):  Office-related Expenses
  • $ 7 million (or 5% of revenue):  Research
  • $ 7 million (or 5% of revenue): Panel Management Expenses
  • $ 6 million (or 5% of revenue):  Travel and Conferences (including 1st class and companion travel)
  • $ 4 million (or 3% of revenue):  Other Expenses (no detail provided for most)
  • $ 3 million (or 2% of revenue):  Public Policy
  • $ 2 million (or 1.5% of revenue):  Advertising and Promotion
  • $ 2 million (or 1.5% of revenue):  Grants

As illustrated above, the three largest expenses are for compensation ($52 million to 291 employees for an average compensation of $180,000) fees for services ($31 million, most of which was for consultants), and office-related expenses of $14 million.

Generally speaking, 160 member companies paid $90 million in membership dues in 2019, for an average of nearly $600,000 each, to pay primarily for administrative organization expenses (compensation, fees, and office-related expenses).

Using the above information, every $100 in revenue was spent as follows:

$100:  Revenue

-$ 40:  Compensation

-$ 24:  Fees for Services (primarily consultants)

-$ 11:  Office-Related Expenses

-$ 75:  Subtotal:  Compensations, Fees, and Office-Related Expenses

 $  25:  Remaining Revenue

-$  5:  Research

-$  5:  Panel Management Expenses

-$  5:  Travel and Conferences

-$  3:  Other Expenses

-$  2:  Public Policy

-$  1.5:  Advertising and Promotion

-$  1.5:  Grants

-$ 23:  Subtotal: Research, Panel Management, Travel, Conferences, Other, Advertising, and Grants

 $   2: Revenue Remaining:  To General Fund

As illustrated above, expenses closely followed revenue with $2 million (or 2% of revenue) left unspent and added to the general fund, which contributed (along with $8 million in unrealized gains on investments) to the organization reporting $60 million in net assets at year-end.

To read the IRS Form 990 (2019), click here.

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