Report of the statutory auditor on the financial statements
As statutory auditor, we have audited the financial statements of Repower AG, which comprise the balance sheet, income statement and notes, for the year ended 31 December 2016.
Board of Directors’ responsibility
The Board of Directors is responsible for the preparation of the financial statements in accordance with the requirements of Swiss law and the company’s articles of incorporation. This responsibility includes designing, implementing and maintaining an internal control system relevant to the preparation of financial statements that are free from material misstatement, whether due to fraud or error. The Board of Directors is further responsible for selecting and applying appropriate accounting policies and making accounting estimates that are reasonable in the circumstances.
Our responsibility is to express an opinion on these financial statements based on our audit. We conducted our audit in accordance with Swiss law and Swiss Auditing Standards. Those standards require that we plan and perform the audit to obtain reasonable assurance whether the financial statements are free from material misstatement.
An audit involves performing procedures to obtain audit evidence about the amounts and disclosures in the financial statements. The procedures selected depend on the auditor’s judgment, including the assessment of the risks of material misstatement of the financial statements, whether due to fraud or error. In making those risk assessments, the auditor considers the internal control system relevant to the entity’s preparation of the financial statements in order to design audit procedures that are appropriate in the circumstances, but not for the purpose of expressing an opinion on the effectiveness of the entity’s internal control system. An audit also includes evaluating the appropriateness of the accounting policies used and the reasonableness of accounting estimates made, as well as evaluating the overall presentation of the financial statements. We believe that the audit evidence we have obtained is sufficient and appropriate to provide a basis for our audit opinion.
In our opinion, the financial statements for the year ended 31 December 2016 comply with Swiss law and the company’s articles of incorporation.
Report on key audit matters based on the circular 1/2015 of the Federal Audit Oversight Authority
Key audit matters are those matters that, in our professional judgment, were of most significance in our audit of the financial statements of the current period. These matters were addressed in the context of our audit of the financial statements as a whole, and in forming our opinion thereon, and we do not provide a separate opinion on these matters. For each matter below, our description of how our audit addressed the matter is provided in that context.
We have fulfilled the responsibilities described in the Auditor’s responsibilities section of our report, including in relation to these matters. Accordingly, our audit included the performance of procedures designed to respond to our assessment of the risks of material misstatement of the financial statements. The results of our audit procedures, including the procedures performed to address the matters below, provide the basis for our audit opinion on the financial statements.
Area of focus
Participations of Repower AG add up to 18.0% of total assets and is therefore a material item in the balance sheet. Due to significance of participations and the potential uncertainty around the profitability of participations in the respective markets they operate, valuation was a focus area of our audit. The Company assesses the valuation of its participations annually, considering future earnings, statutory equity and business prospects. The approach requires estimates and assumptions by the Company, such as forecast earnings and cash flows on an individual basis. Changes in estimates and assumptions including future business prospects have an impact on the valuation of participations.
Our audit response
We assessed the Company’s approach to perform the valuation testing on its participations. We evaluated how the Company determined profitability and equity and other relevant forecast information. We considered the internal controls framework around defining estimates and assumptions. We assessed the valuation of each participation individually to corroborate our understanding about its business prospects and anticipated future developments with the Company.
Area of focus
Positive and negative replacement values recorded in the financial statements are a result of classification of derivative financial instruments as “held-for-trading”, in contrast to those classified as “own-use”. Their carrying amount is based on valuing current commodity contracts and reflecting existing netting agreements with counterparties.
Classification as held-for-trading requires judgment and has a material impact on both balance sheet presentation and recognition of changes in valuation of these derivatives in the income statement.
The valuation of these instruments is derived from observable market data on active markets. The positive and negative replacement values are presented net when legally enforceable netting agreements are in place.
The Company defines policies and procedures to account for energy contracts. This process includes segregation of duties and controls.
Due to the significance of these transactions, significant judgment and the potential impact on the financial statements, the accounting of energy derivatives was considered significant in our audit. Refer to notes 5 and 14 of the financial statements for further information.
Our audit response
We assessed the Company’s process around accounting of commodity contracts in general and the policies and procedures related to classifying commodity contracts as either held-for-trading or for the purpose of own use in particular. We assessed internal controls over the Company’s accounting for such trading activity.
We evaluated the Company’s policies and procedures around classification, valuation and netting of open positions including the established segregation of duties and discussed these with the Company.
We evaluated the sensitivity of the key assumptions applied and compared these assumptions to other information.
Area of focus
Tangible assets is a material balance amounting to 27.1% of total assets in the balance sheet. These comprise primarily power plants, grids and other non-current assets of the Company.
The Company assesses the valuation of its power plants annually or when indicators for impairment exist. The Company’s other non-current assets including grids are assessed for impairment when indicators for impairment exist.
The testing for potential impairments involves the use of estimates and assumptions, such as the forecast production volume, the forecast long-term energy price curve, foreign exchange rates impacting future earnings and cash flows. In addition, discount rates are relevant in obtaining a value in use as of the date of the valuation.
Our audit response
We assessed the Company’s valuation approach related to its power plants and other assets and related documentation. We further assessed the process to derive the underlying assumptions and estimates around forecast production volumes, the forecast long-term energy price curve and foreign exchange rates. We evaluated the internal controls related to the budgeting and forecasting process as well as the process to derive assumptions and estimates. We evaluated impairment testing model and involved valuation specialists.
We assessed the cash flows derived for each tested tangible asset and how the discount rate including applicable input variables was determined. We corroborated the input variables to the discount rate based on sources provided by the Company and tested them against observable market data.
Report on other legal requirements
We confirm that we meet the legal requirements on licensing according to the Auditor Oversight Act (AOA) and independence (article 728 CO and article 11 AOA) and that there are no circumstances incompatible with our independence.
In accordance with article 728a para. 1 item 3 CO and Swiss Auditing Standard 890, we confirm that an internal control system exists, which has been designed for the preparation of financial statements according to the instructions of the Board of Directors.
We further confirm that the proposed appropriation of available earnings complies with Swiss law and the company’s articles of incorporation. We recommend that the financial statements submitted to you be approved.