8 August 2014

DATEV's Annual Press Conference 2014

"It was a very successful year showing the highest absolute revenue growth since 1993" says Prof. Dieter Kempf, Chairman of DATEV's Managing Board, of the fiscal year 2013.

Professor Dieter Kempf

DATEV's corporate figures were presented at the annual press conference. "Compared to last year, sales increased by 43 million euros to 803 million euros, which represents an increase of 5.7%."

When asked about the key factors of this very successful business development, Professor Kempf replies: "The success of 2013 is due to the fact that we placed our business on a solid foundation - in accounting, personnel management, and tax computation. We have achieved significant sales growth in all product groups."

In the press conference, a recurring theme were the various topics related to the digitization of business processes. Which developments are of central importance?

"With the digitalization of small and medium businesses, the most important issue is to read and input data electronically from process steps regarding accounting, i.e. from receiving a business transaction up to its archiving. Therefore, we have committed ourselves to specific steps of the process, for example, to "substitute scanning." It also helps saving a large amount of administrational costs, especially with small and medium-sized companies which, today, are sometimes afraid to dispose of original documents. Often they are not sure whether it is permissible to dispose of booking vouchers, and the tax adviser can also not give them a clear recommendation because he might be made liable for incorrect advice. The legal position in this respect is still very uncertain, but if we had security in this matter, we could significantly reduce administrative costs. Therefore, this was a very important issue to us, and we have tried to promote specific topics and to expedite them."

Regarding digital accounting, you criticized the draft last year. What has happened since then?

"The topics that were discussed beforehand are now no longer on the agenda, but at the same time the wording of the principles of orderly accounting as we now know them are going to be final because nothing will change. They were sharpened in some points, for example, when looking into the history of the topic, but also on the issue of posting data codification. Now, I do not think that is dramatic, but it must be said, however, the ideas which economy and the trade associations had in mind were not met. But I think you can largely support it through technology. It would be important that we now demonstrate legal compliance, which I expect in the next few weeks since the draft will then be implemented. That is when we will achieve force of law."