Independent assurance report

To: the shareholders and Supervisory Board of KPMG N.V.

Our opinion

We have audited the sustainability information in the accompanying integrated report for the year 2021/2022 of KPMG N.V. (‘the company’) at Amstelveen. An audit is aimed at obtaining a reasonable level of assurance. 

In our opinion, the sustainability information presents, in all material respects, a reliable and adequate view of:

  • the policy and business operations with regard to corporate social responsibility; and

  • the thereto related events and achievements for the year ended 30 September 2022

in accordance with the reporting criteria as included in the section ‘reporting criteria’.

The sustainability information consists of the following chapters in the integrated report:

  • Message from our CEO

  • Our business

  • Strategy, performance and outlook

  • Appendix:

    • Reporting principles,

    • Management of material topics,

    • Global Reporting Initiative contents table,

    • Definitions of key performance indicators and other metrics.

Basis for our opinion

We have conducted our audit on the sustainability information in accordance with Dutch law, including Dutch Standard 3810N ‘Assurance-opdrachten inzake maatschappelijke verslagen’ (Assurance engagements relating to sustainability reports). Our responsibilities under this standard are further described in the section ‘Our responsibilities for the audit of the sustainability information’ section of our report.

We are independent of KPMG N.V. in accordance with the ‘Verordening inzake de onafhankelijkheid van accountants bij assurance-opdrachten’ (ViO, Code of ethics for professional accountants, a regulation with respect to independence). Furthermore we have complied with the ‘Verordening gedrags- en beroepsregels accountants’ (VGBA, Dutch code of ethics).

We believe that the audit evidence we have obtained is sufficient and appropriate to provide a basis for our opinion.

Reporting criteria

The sustainability information needs to be read and understood together with the reporting criteria. KPMG N.V. is solely responsible for selecting and applying these reporting criteria, taking into account applicable law and regulations related to reporting.

The reporting criteria used for the preparation of the sustainability information are the Sustainability Reporting Standards of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) and the applied supplemental reporting criteria as disclosed in appendix ‘Reporting principles’ of the integrated report.

The absence of an established practice on which to draw, to evaluate and measure non-financial information allows for different, but acceptable, measurement techniques and can affect comparability between entities and over time.

Limitations to the scope of our audit

The sustainability information includes prospective information such as ambitions, strategy, plans, expectations, estimates and risk assessments. Inherent to prospective information, the actual future results are uncertain. We do not provide any assurance on the assumptions and achievability of prospective information in the sustainability information.

The references to external sources or websites in the sustainability information are not part of the sustainability information as audited by us. We therefore do not provide assurance on this information.

Our opinion is not modified in respect to these matters.

Responsibilities of management and the supervisory board for the sustainability information

Management is responsible for the preparation of reliable and adequate sustainability information in accordance with the reporting criteria as included in the section ‘reporting criteria’, including the identification of stakeholders and the definition of material matters. The choices made by the management board regarding the scope of the sustainability information and the reporting policy are summarised in Appendix ‘Reporting principles’ of the integrated report.

Furthermore, management is responsible for such internal control as it determines is necessary to enable the preparation of the sustainability information that is free from material misstatement, whether due to fraud or error.

The supervisory board is responsible for overseeing the reporting process of KPMG N.V.

Our responsibilities for the audit of the sustainability information

Our audit has been performed with a high, but not absolute, level of assurance, which means we may not have detected all material errors and fraud.

We apply the ‘Nadere voorschriften kwaliteitssystemen)’ (NVKS, regulations for quality management systems) and accordingly maintain a comprehensive system of quality control including documented policies and procedures regarding compliance with ethical requirements, professional standards and other relevant legal and regulatory requirements.

We have exercised professional judgement and have maintained professional scepticism throughout the audit, in accordance with the Dutch Standard 3810N, ethical requirements and independence requirements.

Our audit included among others:

  • Performing an analysis of the external environment and obtaining an understanding of relevant social themes and issues, and the characteristics of the company;

  • Evaluating the appropriateness of the reporting criteria used, their consistent application and related disclosures in the sustainability information. This includes the evaluation of the results of the stakeholders’ dialogue and the reasonableness of estimates made by management;

  • Obtaining an understanding of the systems and processes for collecting, reporting and consolidating the sustainability information, including obtaining an understanding of internal control relevant to our audit, but not for the purpose of expressing an opinion on the effectiveness of the company’s internal control;

  • Identifying and assessing the risks if the sustainability information is misleading or unbalanced, or contains material misstatements, whether due to errors or fraud. Designing and performing further audit procedures responsive to those risks, and obtaining audit evidence that is sufficient and appropriate to provide a basis for our opinion. The risk that the sustainability information is misleading or unbalanced, or the risk of not detecting a material misstatement resulting from fraud is higher than for one resulting from errors. Fraud may involve collusion, forgery, intentional omissions, misrepresentations, or the override of internal control. These further procedures consisted amongst others of:

    • Interviewing management and relevant staff responsible for the sustainability strategy, policies and results;

    • Interviewing relevant staff responsible for providing the information for, carrying out internal control procedures on, and consolidating the data in the sustainability information;

    • Obtaining assurance information that the sustainability information reconciles with underlying records of the company;

    • Evaluating relevant internal and external documentation, on a test basis, to determine the reliability of the information in the sustainability information;

  • Reconciling the relevant financial information with the financial statements;

  • Evaluating the consistency of the sustainability information with the information in the integrated report which is not included in the scope of our audit;

  • Evaluating the overall presentation, structure and content of the sustainability information;

  • Considering whether the sustainability information as a whole, including the disclosures, reflects the purpose of the reporting criteria used.

We communicate with the supervisory board regarding, among other matters, the planned scope and timing of the audit and significant findings, including any significant findings in internal control that we identify during our audit.

The Hague, 15 December 2022

For and on behalf of BDO Audit & assurance B.V.,

N.W.A. van Nuland RA