Dutch tax policies best in Europe - financial targets are missing
By Timmy Fredriksson
The 25 largest companies in The Netherlands have ranked their corporate websites against stakeholder demands and, on the whole, the results show improvement. The biggest score increases where seen in sustainability information, while IR has dropped and would benefit from attention.
Increased transparency in sustainability
When it comes to showing off their approach to corporate citizenship, Dutch companies are on the rise. Their average score has increased from 42% to 51% since last year – an encouraging step forward, since sustainability information is in requested by both the capital market and jobseekers.
Although the score for sustainability reports has gone down from 73% to 64%, good progress has been made in two important areas: environmental targets and responsible tax policies, both of which rose by an excellent 14% each, to 60% and 56% respectively since last year.
By providing environmental targets, a company increases the likelihood of being perceived as a good corporate citizen. It shows how far along they’ve come in their sustainability journey – a piece of information requested by the capital market and jobseekers alike. The same can be said for responsible tax policies; by providing this content, a company can be seen as confident in being transparent. This confidence is also reflected in the Dutch approach to disclosing tax policies, where they outperform their European counterparts.
Two Dutch companies take point when it comes to sustainability: Unilever and DSM, both scoring above 90%.
Financial targets wanted
Overall, the score for Dutch IR sections was unexpectedly low. Although the average is just 1% below their European counterparts, the overall score has dropped down to 28% from last year’s 35%.
The IR section is the most important part of a corporate website when it comes to communicating with the capital market and this score is a clear signal that improvements are needed.
Going beyond the numbers, we can see that Dutch companies are better than their European counterparts at providing outlook overviews and funding information, so the focus should primarily be placed on offering the most important information, as seen by the capital market: financial targets and achievements. These categories currently have an average stakeholder fulfilment score of 8% and Dutch companies would greatly aid the capital market in their assessments by working on integrating this information on their websites. This is an opportunity to showcase their goals, what they think is achievable in the future, as well as past achievements as clear evidence of a company’s track record.
Best in class in the Netherlands IR sections was DSM, with a fulfilment of 50%.
The top performers & fastest climbers
Ranked as number 12 last year, Philips Electronics has increased their score by 10.8 points (59.1 points in total), earning them 3rd place and making them the fastest climber.
Placing as number 3 on the French list, Airbus also earned 2nd place in the Dutch rankings.
And, for the fourth year in a row, DSM was the top performer on the Dutch Webranking list.
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