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25:05 minutes listen, Podcast in German

In this episode of KPMG Expert Talk, Silvan Jurt, Partner and Head Corporate Sustainability Services at KPMG, and Reto Eberle, Professor of Audit and Internal Control at the University of Zurich and Partner at KPMG, discuss the rapid changes in corporate reporting. Having supplemented financial reporting with governance issues in the past, the latest demands from investors and clients surround the sustainability of a company.

This episode is part of our series on sustainability that KPMG has launched together with the swissVR board association.

"The danger of greenwashing is to be averted not least by standardizing corporate reporting."

– Prof. Dr. Reto Eberle, Partner at KPMG

"Fast-paced developments revolving around non-financial reporting are creating major challenges for companies."

– Silvan Jurt, Partner at KPMG

Insights and takeaways

  • Investors and clients increasingly demand company information that goes beyond just financial reporting. It is no longer sufficient to supply information on the impact of business activities on the environment, such as a company’s carbon footprint for example – they also want clear statements about the resilience of a company’s business model against ecological or other risks.
  • Internationally, there are several initiatives to harmonize sustainability reporting. Firms should get ready to face mandatory requirements regarding the scope and nature of the information to be disclosed and examined by an independent third party.
  • Numerous reporting standards and the sheer pace of developments give rise to uncertainty. A firm’s Board of Directors would be well-advised to take an in-depth look at the regulation surrounding sustainability reporting. Beyond that, they should also address whether the information disclosed provides insight into the material non-financial aspects of the business model and helps the investor understand how the company creates value.
  • Big firms are not the only ones who need to get a hold on sustainability reporting – small and medium enterprises are also equally affected, in particular because larger firms will be obliged to produce proof from their suppliers regarding the sustainability of their products and services, and last but not least because investors want to understand and manage their risks. 

Experts

  • Silvan Jurt, Partner at KPMG, Head Corporate Sustainability Services
  • Prof. Dr. Reto Eberle, Partner at KPMG, Professor of Audit and Internal Control at the University of Zurich