The Audit Committee News informs you about all of the latest trends in its core focus areas of corporate governance, risk management & compliance and corporate reporting. The ACNews features articles penned by experts from Switzerland and many other countries around the world.
Esteemed Board members,
This year’s ACI annual event, which took place at the Hotel Widder on 28 November, was dedicated to Compliance Management. Martina Nikles summarizes the most important findings for us. She emphasizes that when developing a Compliance Management System, there is more at stake than “just” avoiding fines or refunds, namely maintaining a company’s good reputation and thus ensuring its sustained success. Peter Spuhler, President and owner of Stadler Rail, shares his view on compliance in an interview with Martina Nikles. He finds that the greatest compliance risks at Stadler Rail are directly related to the tendering process. However, he also believes that the overarching goal of compliance measures must be to secure long-term trust in the company, which, in addition to the quality and reliability of the products on offer, is the central foundation for corporate success.
Internal Audit must be geared to the key risks of a company in order to make a real contribution to its long-term success. Luka Zupan and Stephanie Föhn show how the focus of Internal Audit has shifted in recent years. Whereas in the past, the focus was on the internal control system, today's Internal Audit deals with topics such as cyber security, data protection and talent management, and the resulting risks for the company.
Moving on to accounting, Thomas Wicki discusses the significance of the discount rate when recording leasing contracts in accordance with the new IFRS 16 standard. The derivation of the discount rate is not that simple, but its impact on assets and liabilities as well as various key figures is considerable. Reto Eberle then highlights the latest developments in Swiss GAAP FER. In response to the new IFRS standards, the FER provisions on revenue recognition were slightly adjusted already for 2016, while those on leasing remain unchanged for the time being. On 5 December 2017, the new Swiss GAAP FER standard on the accounting of insurance companies was submitted for consultation. The consultation period will end on 31 March 2018.
The present ACNews are enhanced with comments on the development of corporate governance in Europe and supplemented by observations on Switzerland and the UK. In addition, Prof. Peter Leibfried writes on the first implementation of the ACA Research Forum at the University of St. Gallen, where scientists and practitioners discussed current issues of accounting, auditing and corporate governance.
We wish you an informative read, a joyful holiday season and a happy and successful New Year!
Philipp Hallauer & Reto Eberle
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