by François Masquelier, Head of Corporate Finance and Treasury, RTL Group, and Honorary Chairman, European Association of Corporate Treasurers
A number of somewhat avant-garde multinationals have realised how far one single document, combining structured and comprehensive communication on financial and non-financial performance, can take them in projecting an image of innovation and in demonstrating real determination to be right up to date. This more co-ordinated and consolidated approach to communication also demonstrates that they want to create a company that is more sustainable in the long run. Doing it is great. Communicating it is even better. Publicising it in a more organised way is ideal. Sometimes it is more the form than the content that will give the impression of pioneering spirit. Some large international groups have understood this – for instance Philips and PepsiCo – and they try to show the readers of their annual reports that they are at the forefront of ‘social responsibility’ and that sustainability goes hand-in-hand with finance.
“It’s no use saying ‘we are doing our best’. You have got to succeed in doing what is necessary”