Annual Report 2017

Assets and financial position 

The balance sheet total increased by 1.6 million euros to 50.5 million euros (previous year: 48.9 million euros). 

On the asset side, scheduled depreciation and amortization reduced intangible assets and property, plant and equipment by 0.6 million euros to 16.4 million euros (previous year: 17.0 million euros). Financial assets changed by more than 0.5 million euros compared to the previous year and increased to 12.8 million euros (previous year: 12.2 million euros).  

Current assets increased on balance by 1.6 million euros, in particular as a result of the increase of 2.7 million euros in the amount held by financial insitutions, with a simultaneous reduction in securities positions.  

On the liabilities side, there was an increase in equity of 1.2 million euros and liabilities of 0.4 million euros, while the reserves remained constant.  

Equity rose to 37.6 million euros (previous year: 36.4 million euros). This is entirely attributable to the net profit for the year of 1.2 million euros. The equity ratio amounted to 74.5% as of the balance sheet date (previous year: 74.3%).  

With cash and cash equivalents (including short-term realizable securities) amounting to 10.9 million euros (previous year: 9.7 million euros), there remains a solid financial base. Long-term fixed assets continue to be fully covered by equity.  

For the 2017 financial year, cash flow from current activities (including income from profit transfers and holdings) amounted to 3.9 million euros (previous year: 3.7 million euros). The investment sum (excluding financial assets) increased by 0.5 million euros to 2.3 million euros (previous year: 1.7 million euros). Here, the main focus of the investment activity of the past fiscal year was again the further development of individual modules of our editorial and ERP systems, the expansion of the image portal, the purchase of social media monitoring software and replacement purchases of operating and office equipment.

4. Financial and non-financial performance indicators  

Alongside our corporate strategy, the internal control system has been aligned and suitable control parameters defined. Here, dpa differentiates between financial and non-financial performance indicators. The financial performance indicators include the sustained increase in profitability and the associated increase in the value of the company. 

In terms of earning power, sales and profits are the most important target and control indicators.  Data such as the development of the services’ volume of reports are key control features. The volume of delivered reports is also an important indicator of the company’s leading position in the market.  

Thus, in 2017, the number of texts in the basic service (excluding the editorial service) remained at a consistently high level of 208,000 (previous year: 209,000). Another important control variable is the quality assurance of the report generation and the resulting inferable error rate. As part of the 2017 annual review, for the first time an external auditor undertook the process-oriented review of the quality assurance and, in the areas examined, rated it as very good.  

Taking into account the high number of publications, the error rate has risen slightly over the years but has nevertheless been classified as very low.