IFRS

Audit of IFRS financial statements

As the leading mid-market audit firm, RSM has a wide range of experience in auditing, across multiple jurisdictions, the IFRS financial statements of both privately and publicly held entities. Characteristics of our approach to IFRS audits include:

  • Defining up-front with our clients those technical audit and accounting areas which may be more efficiently audited from the centre, sometimes before the reporting date, to ensure efficiency and a minimal level of year end surprise
  • Providing guidance on the accounting and audit impact of new standards well before implementation deadlines
  • Leveraging the industry and country knowledge that we have easy access to through the RSM network, and through our own experience here in Switzerland

Conversion to IFRS

Getting through the IFRS conversion process and initial reporting period can be a significant challenge. Companies converting to new accounting standards tend to underestimate what is involved, particularly in terms of time and resources. RSM takes a pragmatic approach to:

  • Initial diagnostics to identify up front the “as is” compared to IFRS differences, the key conversion challenges, and the resources required to address these
  • Assisting you in development of the project plan for the conversion
  • Advice on adapting processes, systems, data and manuals
  • Providing technical accounting advice and support during the conversion
  • Assisting you with training and support, and designing this so that ongoing ownership of IFRS processes and reporting is with you rather than with external advisors

Conversion to IFRS is much more than a technical accounting issue. IFRS may significantly affect any number of a company's day-to-day operations and impact the reported profitability of the business. Companies that have benefited most from the transition are those that looked at this as a chance to make improvements to their systems and processes and have used it as a focus for more efficient, timely and meaningful internal and external financial information.

Due diligence in an IFRS environment

Merger & Acquisition contracts, and often external debt agreements, require the underlying financial information for the measurement of EBITDA, debt covenants or other transaction benchmarks to be measured by reference to internationally recognized standards such as IFRS.

RSM’s accounting advisory and due diligence professionals are accustomed to working together, with our clients, to identify the key IFRS accounting variables that can move these benchmarks and assist in determining how these should be addressed in the deal so that your transaction objectives are met. This can include, for example:

  • Prior to signing the transaction paperwork, helping to define the terminology utilised so that exceptional items, non-recurring transactions, the effect of changes to accounting standards and other such items do not impact the benchmarks in unexpected ways
  • Assisting in modelling the impact of IFRS so that a clear understanding of this informs the negotiation process
  • Helping to identify exclusions that you may wish to include in a deal so that, for example, only IFRS matters that impact operating profit and value are embedded in the transaction contracts

Reconciliation between IFRS and other accounting standards (US GAAP or local standards)

Cross-border business frequently requires that entities share their financial statement with foreign business partners, who will typically not understand Swiss CO or other local accounting frameworks. In addition, listings on foreign stock exchanges or private placements frequently require a reconciliation of local “GAAP” (Generally Accepted Accounting Principles”) to IFRS. RSM can assist clients in identifying and  measuring such differences, and presenting them in a way that facilitates constructive communication with the business partners concerned.

Assistance in the preparation and application of IFRS accounting manuals

Accounting manuals should provide practical, usable, guidance that assists finance and accounting personnel in their day to day work rather than overwhelming them with accounting technicalities. At RSM we can help you plan, develop and roll-out accounting guidance which:

  • Focusses on the key operations finance issues
  • Is tailored to the systems that you currently have or are developing, rather than assuming systems you do not yet have
  • Takes account of the existing IFRS knowledge levels in your business

IFRS training

RSM provides extensive IFRS training, most frequently online, to our personnel worldwide as they progress their careers through working with clients who use IFRS. Although we do not provide “standard” IFRS training modules, we are please to develop and provide IFRS webinars or other similar trainings tailored to assist clients in:

  • Understanding and implementing new or updated IFRS standards
  • Providing annual IFRS updates, tailored to your business, to financial reporting personnel
  • Developing IFRS training materials which clients desire to deliver themselves in-house, and assisting with “train the trainer” programmes

How can we help you?

Contact us by phone +41 43 488 5100 (Zurich) , +41 21 311 00 53 (Lausanne) or  +41  22 888 5050 (Geneva) or submit your questions, comments, or proposal requests.

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