Annual Report 2021



The General Meeting appointed PricewaterhouseCoopers AG, Zurich, for the first time as its statutory auditors in April 2002. According to Article 27 of the Articles of Association of the company, the auditors must be newly appointed or confirmed, respectively, each year by the General Meeting. The 2021 reporting year is the second year for the responsible lead auditor (in charge since 2020). Pursuant to the provisions of the Swiss Code of Obligations, the responsible lead auditor may not hold office for more than seven years.

Audit fee

The total audit fees billed by the audit company in the reporting year 2021 amounted to CHF 1.8 million.

Additional fees

The total sum of additional fees – mainly related to tax and EDP advice – billed by the audit company in the reporting year 2021 amounted to CHF 0.3 million.

Supervisory and controlling bodies

Supervision and control regarding the assessment of the auditors is exercised by the whole Board of Directors. The Audit Committee supports the entire Board of Directors in this task. The committee also ensures the ongoing communication with the auditors and regularly discusses with their representatives the results of audit activities in the accounting areas as well as the suitability of the internal control systems. Before the interim audit, the auditors prepare an audit plan, which is then submitted to Audit Committee members. Based on an analysis of current business and audit risks, the main points to be audited are proposed in this plan. The audit plan is approved by the Audit Committee and then also by the Board of Directors. The appropriateness of the audit fee as well as possible additional fees for “non-audit” services, are also reviewed on this occasion. The report on the final audit of the annual financial statements is submitted to all members of the Board of Directors. It is first discussed in the Audit Committee with the auditors and then finally approved by the whole Board of Directors at the meeting or in the circular resolution, respectively, regarding the adoption of the Annual Report. In 2021, the auditors attended one meeting of the Audit Committee. Auditors’ direct access to the Audit Committee is guaranteed at all times. Information about the organization and scope of duties of the Audit Committee can be found in the chapter “Committees of the Board of Directors” in this Annual Report.