ESEF in Practice – 2

Join Accountancy Europe and AMANA to investigate success stories with implementing the European Single Electronic Format (ESEF).
On July 7, Accountancy Europe held the webinar ESEF in Practice where experts shared lessons learnt from the first-year implementation in Germany and explained ongoing preparatory work in France, Spain and the Netherlands. This time around, we will be hearing further insights about ESEF implementation and preparation in other jurisdictions. Assurance concerns will be at the heart of the discussion. Don’t miss this chance to learn from the experts in our network about how to be fully ready for ESEF.

Watch live:


Mona Alfredsson, EY – Sweden
Hilde Blomme, Deputy CEO, Accountancy Europe
Richard Bössen, XBRL Leader and ESEF Expert, EFRAG PTF-ESRS member, AMANA
Philip Kudrna, KPMG – Austria
Mika Kuhanen, KPMG – Finland
Werner Gedlicka, KPMG – Austria
Henrik Grønnegaard, Deloitte – Denmark

Moderated by Jon Rowden, PwC – UK and Ronald van Langen, KPMG – Netherlands



In partnership with:


About AMANA – Leading software solutions for Disclosure Management and XBRL
AMANA has been developing Disclosure Management and XBRL software for more than 10 years. Their XBRL engine is used by hundreds of companies across Europe to generate and process thousands of XBRL reports every year. With more than 600 customers and partners across Europe and more than 200 successfully submitted ESEF filings, they have a lot of practical experience in working with ESEF, both on the accounting and auditing side.

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Hilde Blomme, Deputy CEO, Accountancy Europe opened the webinar highlighting that ESEF and the proposed Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive are significant steps towards the transparency and digitisation of capital markets information. Noting that the future is digital, she confirmed that Accountancy Europe is closely monitoring developments about digital corporate reporting.

Richard Bössen, XBRL Leader and ESEF Expert, AMANA stated that ‘truly digital reporting’, machine-readable financial and non-financial reporting, is around the corner. ESEF’s first year has been a great success with hundreds of issuers being able to file their annual financial reports in ESEF format. He clarified that first time preparers should not be afraid of digital reporting which works and is meaningful. He also called for working towards consistency with regards to digital signature and how to audit ESEF files.

The first session focused on success factors and lessons learnt from the first-year implementation in Austria.

Werner Gedlicka, KPMG – Austria started with explaining the regulatory framework in Austria for listed entities, noting that Austrian Financial Markets Authority (FMA) issued a Q&A document on ESEF related obligations. Accordingly, ESEF assurance is considered as a separate engagement to be conducted by auditors based on ISAE 3000. He also pointed out that auditing 2020 AFRs went well where the issuers corrected errors identified by auditors.

Philip Kudrna, KPMG – Austria described the main filing issues identified by the FMA. He then presented practical tips on how to prepare as an auditor. His recommendations were grouped into two perspectives: IT related considerations and project management aspects. Finally, he explained the tagging and technical challenges encountered by the issuers along with some examples.

In the second session, the experts explained ongoing preparatory work in Denmark, Finland and Sweden.

Mika Kuhanen, KPMG – Finland underlined that, as in many other initiatives, for ESEF the first year will be challenging for both issuers and auditors. He strongly recommended auditors and issuers doing a ‘dry-run’ and taking steps to deal with errors identified as quick as possible. According to him there will eventually be gray areas which require applying professional judgement.

Mona Alfredsson, EY – Sweden noted that the profession has already started to prepare last year with developing an assurance standard including technical guidelines. She also reminded that there are still many practical questions asked by stakeholders and the Swedish Institute is in the process of publishing a Q&A document to help both issuers and auditors.

Henrik Grønnegaard, Deloitte – Denmark confirmed that the filing issues and technical challenges mentioned by other speakers are also observed in Denmark. He reiterated that time management is key as there will be several iterations for preparing ESEF-compliant annual financial reports. He mentioned that involvement of the audit team is crucial for ESEF assurance engagements when interpreting the accounting meaning of tags.

Richard Bössen, XBRL Leader and ESEF Expert, AMANA noted that the most important lesson learnt for the issuers is the need to start preparing early and communicating with the auditors. A typical ESEF assurance engagement will cover the checking the technical validity of ESEF files, whether digital files present the same information with the human-readable financial statements and whether the tagging has been made in compliance with ESEF rules.

Hilde Blomme, Deputy CEO, Accountancy Europe thanked AMANA, moderators and speakers. She noted that the CEAOB has revised their guidelines on auditor’s involvement with ESEF which will soon be made available along with other key materials on Accountancy Europe ESEF hub.

  • Opening Remarks

    Hilde Blomme, Deputy CEO, Accountancy Europe
    Richard Bössen, XBRL Leader and ESEF Expert, AMANA

  • Success stories from first year (followed by Q&A)

    Interviewer: Jon Rowden, PwC - UK
    Philip Kudrna, KPMG – Austria
    Werner Gedlicka, KPMG - Austria

  • Ongoing efforts for ESEF preparation (followed by Q&A)

    Interviewer: Ronald van Langen, KPMG - Netherlands
    Mona Alfredsson, EY – Sweden
    Mika Kuhanen, KPMG - Finland
    Henrik Grønnegaard, Deloitte – Denmark

  • Closing Remarks

    Richard Bössen, XBRL Leader and ESEF Expert, AMANA Hilde Blomme, Deputy CEO, Accountancy Europe

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