Competitive awareness: Accounting for corporate performance in the Europe 170
The objective ofthe research is to reinstate value added accounting in a capital market context to judge corporate performance and corporate strategy. The thesis uses a value added format to deconstruct return on capital employed (ROCE) and reviews how income percolates down a value added statement to the bottom line. As expenses are collected by their 'nature' this approach avoids the arbitrariness associated with categorising expenses by 'function'. In addition corporate performance is presented in a pyramid structure offmancial key ratios which enables the .addition ofa capit.al market dimension, an important consideration when fIrms and their managers are under pressUre to I deliver shareholder value. The framework is used to construct a dataset offIrms listed in the main European stock . . market indices (FTSElOO, CAC40 and DAX30), to make similarities and differences of / . fmancial ratios visible at the macro, meso and micro level. As such it is possible to judge' performance and managerial priorities as well as position individual fIrms, as done in the case study, into a quintile distribu~ion. The case study also reviews strategic narratives for the case fIrms and make a more detailed fmancial analysis th.an possible for the Europe 170, which makes visible the strength of aligning'narratives with numbers. The contribution to knowledge, besides the dataset itself, is related to the usefulness ofthe value added accounting format in relation to capital markets by: Ã‚Â• Revealing a complementary set ofvalue drivers to that existing in fmance theory by using a nature of expense format. Suggesting an 'accounting theory of the firm' by integrating the industry and,the resource based view ofstrategy with shareholder value metrics. The integration ofaccounting numbers and strategic narratives enables feedback mechanisms for the reformulation ofstrategy. Keywords: Value added statement, nature of expense IFRS value drivers, theory of the firm, strategic management accounting.