Charity Case Study 3 – The Zoo


  1. Horus Consulting
  2. Leicestershire
  3. 2009


The Zoo is the leading primate centre in the UK and was poised to embark upon an ambitious capital programme. However, the collapse of a leading merchant bank meant that the project had to be significantly scaled back.

The Zoo has charitable status but is also involved in education projects, has a retail operation (café & shop) and a mini funfair.

The purpose of the assignment was to:

  1. Assist the Chief Executive and Trustees with their project plan
  2. Undertake a detailed financial review as there was severe pressure on cash flow
  3. Advise the Chief Executive of Key Performance Indicators /metrics which could be useful


Initially brought in to conduct a financial review following the collapse of a major bank and advise how it could complete its major capital project with less cash. The current Finance Director had no experience in this area.


  1. Discussed key metrics with Zoo’s in the USA and New Zealand. Understood the critical success factors to running a zoo.
  2. Reviewed the current capital project with the architects and planners
  3. Reviewed the current income and expenditure of the zoo
  4. Wrote a report on how the situation could be “turned around”


  1. Capital Project went ahead at 2/3rds of original expectation
  2. Implementation of KPI’s to give advance warning of impending issues
  3. Reposition individuals in roles more suitable to their skill base