A CHALLENGE: For many SMEs, "sustainability" has always been part of their corporate culture when dealing with customers, suppliers and employees. The EU Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD), which has been in force since January 2023, obliges large SMEs to report transparently on certain sustainability issues. The specific requirements are defined in the European Sustainability Reporting Standards (ESRS) and the EU Taxonomy Regulation (Regulation (EU) 2020/852).

The sustainability report within the meaning of the CSRD is a mandatory component of the (Group) management report and, in addition to the obligation to disclose, is also subject to a separate audit obligation by an auditor or auditing firm.

We at GKK PARTNERS prepared for the additional requirements at an early stage in order to provide our clients with expert support in the introduction of sustainability reporting. Our auditors and sustainability auditors accompany you from the initial materiality analysis through the definition and introduction of reporting structures to the final audited sustainability report.

Are you affected by the CSRD? First steps towards a sustainability report

Large medium-sized companies and groups must prepare and have their first sustainability report audited for the financial year beginning on or after 1 January 2025. Large companies or groups are those that exceed at least two of the following three criteria:

  •     50 million sales revenue
  •     25 million balance sheet total
  •     250 employees (annual average)

If the company is included in a consolidated financial statement, it may be exempt from the obligation to prepare a sustainability report if the parent company prepares and publishes a consolidated sustainability report, which is also subject to the audit obligation.

The so-called "materiality analysis" defined in the ESRS 1 standard is the central starting point for the introduction of sustainability reporting. This enables the identification of those sustainability topics that are significant for the company, taking into account its specific business activities, as only these are to be reported on. In this context, the principle of "double materiality" applies. On the one hand, the impact of the company's activities on its environment (e.g. employees, customers, suppliers or nature in general) must be considered. On the other hand, the potential risks and opportunities arising from the sustainability issues for the business activity must also be determined. If a sustainability issue can already be categorised as material from one of these two perspectives, it must be reported on.

We support you in all the necessary steps towards sustainability reporting - professionally sound and with a sense of proportion.

Our auditors and sustainability auditors support you from the initial essentiality analysis through the definition and introduction of reporting structures to the final audited sustainability report.

Andreas Bauer | Sustainability Auditor (IDW) | Wirtschaftsprüfer | Partner


Impact analysis

The first step is to clarify the following questions:

  •     When do you fall under the legal obligation to report on sustainability?
  •     What options are there for exemption from the reporting obligation?

Initial assessment of the potentially reportable sustainability topics based on the analysis of your business activities

Essentiality analysis

  •     Preparation and implementation of the essentiality analysis based on workshops, stakeholder surveys and research
  •     Identification of impacts, risks and opportunities for material sustainability topics
  •     Documenting the results

Implementation of internal sustainability reporting

  •     Joint development of sustainability goals, strategies and measures
  •     Definition and determination of reportable key figures and parameters
  •     Support in setting up the necessary reporting processes

Review of sustainability reports within the framework of legal regulations

Find out about your sustainability reporting now!

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