Independent Auditor’s Report On A Limited Assurance Engagement
The assurance engagement performed by Ernst & Young (EY) relates exclusively to the German version of the non-financial statement 2021 of Beiersdorf AG. The following text is a translation of the original German independent assurance report.
To Beiersdorf AG, Hamburg
We have performed a limited assurance engagement on the non-financial statement of Beiersdorf AG, Hamburg, (hereinafter the “Company”), which is combined with the non-financial statement of the Group, consisting of the section “Non-financial Statement 2022” as well as the disclosures marked with the symbol ↱↲ in the sections “Business and Strategy” and “People at Beiersdorf” of the Combined Management Report, for the period from 1 January 2022 to 31 December 2022 (hereinafter the “non-financial statement”).
Not subject to our assurance engagement are other references to disclosures made outside the non-financial statement.
Responsibilities of the executive directors
The executive directors of the Company are responsible for the preparation of the non-financial statement in accordance with Sec. 315c in conjunction with Secs. 289c to 289e HGB [“Handelsgesetzbuch”: German Commercial Code] and Art. 8 of Regulation (EU) 2020/852 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 June 2020 on the establishment of a framework to facilitate sustainable investment and amending Regulation (EU) 2019/2088 (hereinafter the “EU Taxonomy Regulation”) and the Delegated Acts adopted thereunder as well as in accordance with their own interpretation of the wording and terms contained in the EU Taxonomy Regulation and the Delegated Acts adopted thereunder as set out in section “EU Taxonomy Reporting” of the non-financial statement.
These responsibilities of the Company’s executive directors include the selection and application of appropriate non-financial reporting methods and making assumptions and estimates about individual non-financial disclosures that are reasonable in the circumstances. Furthermore, the executive directors are responsible for such internal control as the executive directors consider necessary to enable the preparation of a non-financial statement that is free from material misstatement, whether due to fraud (manipulation of the non-financial) or error.
The EU Taxonomy Regulation and the Delegated Acts adopted thereunder contain wording and terms that are still subject to considerable interpretation uncertainties and for which clarifications have not yet been published in every case. Therefore, the executive directors have disclosed their interpretation of the EU Taxonomy Regulation and the Delegated Acts adopted thereunder in section “EU Taxonomy Reporting” of the non-financial statement. They are responsible for the defensibility of this interpretation. Due to the immanent risk that undefined legal terms may be interpreted differently, the legal conformity of the interpretation is subject to uncertainties.
Independence and quality assurance of the auditor’s firm
We have complied with the German professional requirements on independence as well as other professional conduct requirements.
Our audit firm applies the national legal requirements and professional pronouncements – in particular the BS WP/vBP (“Berufssatzung für Wirtschaftsprüfer/vereidigte Buchprüfer”: Professional Charter for German Public Accountants/German Sworn Auditors) in the exercise of their Profession and the IDW Standard on Quality Management issued by the Institute of Public Auditors in Germany (IDW): Requirements for Quality Management in the Audit Firm (IDW QS 1) and accordingly maintains a comprehensive quality management system that includes documented policies and procedures with regard to compliance with professional ethical requirements, professional standards as well as relevant statutory and other legal requirements.
Responsibilities of the auditor
Our responsibility is to express a conclusion with limited assurance on the non-financial statement based on our assurance engagement.
We conducted our assurance engagement in accordance with International Standard on Assurance Engagements (ISAE) 3000 (Revised): “Assurance Engagements other than Audits or Reviews of Historical Financial Information” issued by the IAASB. This standard requires that we plan and perform the assurance engagement to obtain limited assurance about whether any matters have come to our attention that cause us to believe that the Company’s non-financial statement are not prepared, in all material respects, in accordance with Sec. 315c in conjunction with Secs. 289c to 289e HGB and the EU Taxonomy Regulation and the Delegated Acts adopted thereunder as well as the interpretation by the executive directors disclosed in section “EU Taxonomy Reporting” of the non-financial statement. Not subject to our assurance engagement are other references to disclosures made outside the non-financial statement.
In a limited assurance engagement, the procedures performed are less extensive than in a reasonable assurance engagement, and accordingly, a substantially lower level of assurance is obtained. The selection of the assurance procedures is subject to the professional judgment of the auditor.
In the course of our assurance engagement we have, among other things, performed the following assurance procedures and other activities:
- Inquiries of the employees and inspection of documents regarding the selection of topics for the non-financial statement, the risk assessment and the policies of the Company and the Group for the topics identified as material,
- Inquiries of employees at Group level responsible for data capture and consolidation as well as the preparation of the non-financial statement, to evaluate the reporting system, the data capture and compilation methods as well as internal controls to the extent relevant for the assurance of the disclosures in the non-financial statement,
- Identification of likely risks of material misstatement in the non-financial statement,
- Inspection of the relevant documentation of the systems and processes for the collection, aggregation and validation of relevant data during the reporting period and testing such documentation on a sample basis,
- Analytical procedures regarding the quality of selected disclosures in the non-financial statement at Group level and at the level of the business segments Consumer and tesa,
- Inquiries and inspection of documents on a sample basis relating to the collection and reporting of selected data,
- Evaluation of the processes to identify the taxonomy-aligned economic activities and the corresponding disclosures in the non-financial statement,
- Evaluation of the presentation of the non-financial statement.
In determining the disclosures in accordance with Art. 8 of the EU Taxonomy Regulation, the executive directors are required to interpret undefined legal terms. Due to the immanent risk that undefined legal terms may be interpreted differently, the legal conformity of their interpretation and, accordingly, our assurance engagement thereon are subject to uncertainties.
Based on the assurance procedures performed and the evidence obtained, nothing has come to our attention that causes us to believe that the non-financial statement of the Company for the period from 1 January 2022 to 31 December 2022 is not prepared, in all material respects, in accordance with Sec. 315c in conjunction with Secs. 289c to 289e HGB and the EU Taxonomy Regulation and the Delegated Acts adopted thereunder as well as the interpretation by the executive directors as disclosed in section “EU Taxonomy Reporting” of the non-financial statement.
We do not express an assurance conclusion on the other references to disclosures made outside the non-financial statement.
Restriction of use
We draw attention to the fact that the assurance engagement was conducted for the Company’s purposes and that the report is intended solely to inform the Company about the result of the assurance engagement. As a result, it may not be suitable for another purpose than the aforementioned. Accordingly, the report is not intended to be used by third parties for making (financial) decisions based on it. Our responsibility is to the Company alone. We do not accept any responsibility to third parties. Our assurance conclusion is not modified in this respect.
General Engagement Terms and Liability
The “General Engagement Terms for Wirtschaftsprüfer and Wirtschaftsprüfungsgesellschaften [German Public Auditors and Public Audit Firms]” dated 1 January 2017 are applicable to this engagement and also govern our relations with third parties in the context of this engagement (www.de.ey.com/general-engagement-terms). In addition, please refer to the liability provisions contained there in no. 9 and to the exclusion of liability towards third parties. We accept no responsibility, liability or other obligations towards third parties unless we have concluded a written agreement to the contrary with the respective third party or liability cannot effectively be precluded.
We make express reference to the fact that we will not update the report to reflect events or circumstances arising after it was issued, unless required to do so by law. It is the sole responsibility of anyone taking note of the summarized result of our work contained in this report to decide whether and in what way this information is useful or suitable for their purposes and to supplement, verify or update it by means of their own review procedures.
Munich, February 17, 2023
Ernst & Young GmbH
German Public Auditor
German Public Auditor