How are annual reports rated?
|A+ || ||First-rate|
|A || ||Excellent|
|A- || ||Very good|
|B+ || ||Sound|
|B || ||Average|
|B- || ||Uneven|
|C+ || ||Common|
|C || ||Substandard|
|C- || ||Poor|
|D || ||Uncompetitive|
Who rates the reports?
The scoring process is the first stage of the ReportWatch assessment and rating.
Based on a number of report evaluation criteria, the report scoring and "internal rating" is carried out by e.com report analysts (financial analysts, investor relations specialists, corporate communication advisers, accountants, economists, copywriters; at senior, junior and intern levels) and it provides a basis for final ratings by the rating panel and results in the report ranking published in the Annual Report on Annual Reports.
Neither the score nor the breakdown is publicly disclosed. These are only available through an order for a Report Scan placed directly by the company or through an internal representative or external agency.
Top reports are then submitted to an independent rating panel.
The primary role of the rating panel is to cross-check reports scored by e.com and to help move from a very quantitative and "dry" scoring to a more qualitative rating, based both on intrinsic report value and on communication towards various investor and stakeholder audiences. As a result, some reports may be upgraded while others are marked down, some slightly, some significantly. Panel members are asked to judge independently of their own interests or organization position. Their individual votes are not publicly disclosed. However, panelists may be contacted directly. e.com - ReportWatch has the final say on ratings and ranking.
The final rating and the ranking as published are the sole responsibility of e.com - ReportWatch.
The list of panelists over the years has included the following names (nationality and/or country where based in brackets. See Annual Report on Annual Reports archives for background details):
Some panelist names have been withheld due to their position or by request.
- Ruth Arnold (U.S., Netherlands)
- Björn Bergstrand (Sweden)
- Rob Berick (U.S.)
- Susan Blesener (Denmark, Netherlands)
- Ute Bode (Germany)
- Renee Carter (Australia)
- Peter Clifton (UK)
- Ewold de Bruijne (Netherlands)
- Charles de Haan (UK)
- Vero Escarmelle (Belgium)
- Helena Fournial (Sweden, France)
- Kellie Friery (U.S.)
- Kaevan Gazdar (India, Germany)
- Wesley Gee (Canada)
- Catherine Gordon (Canada)
- Sandrine Granados-Demonceaux (France)
- Mike Guillaume (Belgium, U.S., UK)
- Susanna Hjertonsson (Sweden)
- Jakob Ivarsson (Sweden)
- Janet Kersnar (U.S., UK)
- Paul Langsford (UK)
- Henner Lappe (Switzerland)
- Dennis Larsen (Norway, Netherlands, UK)
- Reg Pauffley (UK)
- Pol Schevernels (Netherlands)
- Pradip Seth (Singapore, India)
- José Syne (Belgium, Luxembourg)
- Terry Tyrrell (UK)
- Pravin K Ujjain (India)
- Eva Wolosiuk (Canada)
OUR REGULAR PANEL MEMBERS
Susan Blesener is the founder of The Art of Value, a management consultancy that helps companies define, manage and report on what matters most. She has more than ten years of experience in integrated management and reporting and works with companies in the Africa, Asia, Europe and the U.S. that are on the path to integration. Before establishing The Art of Value, she managed corporate and integrated reporting at IFC (World Bank’s private sector arm), and Novo Nordisk, one of the first companies to issue an integrated report. Her recent projects include developing IIRC-approved training and training the World Bank’s corporate governance advisory personnel in best practice disclosure methods. For this year’s panel, Susan reviewed sustainability and responsibility reporting practices.
Vero has vast experience in coordinating, supervising and producing annual reports, reviews and other corporate printed and online publications. She is now a brand marketing manager at the European office of RICS –a global standards setting property professionals’ organization. Vero previously held junior and then senior marketing and communication positions at The Enterprise Group (e.g. in Southeast Asian markets), Research International (a WPP company), and for a U.S. firm in electronics. She was the co-founder and marketing manager of Enterprise Group’s reporting unit -spun off into e.com in 1999- and started up the Annual Report on Annual Reports for which she has remained an adviser and panel member since the beginning.
With over twenty years’ experience within marketing, business development, corporate communications, PR and IR management in Sweden and the UK, Helena is today based in Paris, France, working with trilingual corporate and investor communications on a freelance basis as well as broadening her linguistic and artistic skills. Helena has gained several awards for Best Investor Relations and Annual Reports in her previous IR roles, notably REGI’s IR Nordic Markets awards, the Swedish annual reports review by FAR (Swedish Financial Analysts) and “the listed company of the year” by Aktiespararna (Swedish shareholder association).
Kaevan Gazdar is responsible for corporate reporting at HypoVereinsbank, one of Germany´s largest banks, now part of the Italian-based Unicredit Group. The bank was awarded many times in German report rating competitions. Kaevan is co-author of the annual report book “Geschäftsbericht ohne Fehl und Tadel” and also published books on corporate citizenship and corporate communication (including “Unternehmerische Wohltaten: Last oder Lust?”). He is a member of the jury of the Good Company ranking, the author of “Reporting Nonfinancials”, and has held seminars and talks at various venues, including FT Knowledge, MCE and Ethical Corporation. Kaevan addressed strategy and responsibility issues for this year’s rating panel.
Reg Pauffley is widely regarded as one of the most experienced figures in global corporate communications. Reg's credentials stem largely from his experience as the founder of Pauffley & Co. Pauffley became a reference in both corporate brand development and global reporting and communications. Clients included a number of global blue chips and FT European top 300 companies. After having been in charge of business development at Merchant and having acted as chairman at Likemind, Reg now spends a great deal of his time advising companies on upgrading their corporate communication and moving towards integrated reporting. Reg is the longest-serving external member on ReportWatch’s rating panel.
Mike is the co-founder and managing director of e.com-ReportWatch, a European-rooted, U.S.-incorporated and London-based firm that specializes in report assessment and benchmarking. Recognized as a leading international expert in corporate and financial reporting, he has reviewed thousands of reports and consulted for 100-plus international companies, and is the co-founder and editor of the Annual Report on Annual Reports. Prior to that, as an executive director of The Enterprise Group, his track record includes an extensive entrepreneurial and global management consulting experience in Europe, North America and Southeast Asia. An economist, financial analyst and investor relations specialist, Mike is also the author of numerous articles and more recently of the book “The Seven Deadly Sins of Capitalism” (two editions).