IFRS 15 Retail – the finest perfect examples

IFRS 15 Retail revenue – finest perfect examples

Retail is the process of selling consumer goods or services to customers through multiple channels of distribution to earn a profit. Retailers satisfy demand identified through a supply chain. The term “retailer” is typically applied where a service provider fills the small orders of many individuals, who are end-users, rather than large orders of a small number of wholesale, corporate or government clientele. (Source: Wikipedia)

So what is the IFRS 15 guidance for retail?

Here are the cases covering the most significant accounting topics for retail in IFRS 15.


Case – Customer incentives Buy three, get coupon for one free

Death By Chocolate Ltd, a high street chain, is offering a promotion whereby a customer who purchases three boxes of chocolates at €20 per box in a single transaction in a store receives an offer for one free box of chocolates if the customer fills out a request form and mails it to them before a set expiration date.

Death By Chocolate estimates, based on recent experience with similar promotions, that 80% of the customers will complete the mail in rebate required to receive the free box of chocolates.

How is a ‘buy three, get one free’ transaction accounted for and presented by Death By Chocolate?

The rules

IFRS 15.22 states: “At contract inception, an entity shall assess the goods or services promised in a contract with a customer and shall identify as a performance obligation each promise to transfer to the customer either:IFRS 15 Retail

  1. a good or service (or a bundle of goods or services) that is distinct; or
  2. a series of distinct goods or services that are substantially the same and that have the same pattern of transfer to the customer (see paragraph 23).”

IFRS 15.26 provides examples of distinct goods and services, including “granting options to purchase additional goods or services (when those options provide a customer with a material right, as described in paragraphs B39-B43)”.

IFRS 15.B40: “If , in a contract, an entity grants a customer the option to acquire additional goods or services, that option gives rise to a performance obligation in the contract only if the option provides a material right to the customer that it would not receive without entering into that contract (for example, a discount that is incremental to the range of discounts typically given for those goods or services to that class of customer in that geographical area or market).

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IFRS 15 Real estate Revenue complete and accurate recognition

IFRS 15 Real estate

Under IFRS 15 real estate entities recognize revenue over the construction period if certain conditions are met.

Key points

  • An entity must judge whether the different elements of a contract can be separated from each other based on the distinct criteria. A more complex judgment exists for real estate developers that provide services or deliver common properties or amenities in addition to the property being sold.
  • Contract modifications are common in the real estate development industry. Contract modifications might needIFRS 15 Real estate to be accounted for as a new contract, or combined and accounted for together with an existing contract.
  • Real estate managers may structure their arrangements such that services and fees are in different contracts. These contracts may meet the requirements to be accounted for as a combined contract when applying IFRS 15.
  • Real estate management entities are often entitled to several different fees. IFRS 15 will require a manager to consider whether the services should be viewed as a single performance obligation, or whether some of these services are ‘distinct’ and should therefore be treated as separate performance obligations.
  • Variable consideration for entities in the real estate industry may come in the form of claims, awards and incentive payments, discounts, rebates, refunds, credits, price concessions, performance bonuses, penalties or other similar items.
  • Real estate developers will need to consider whether they meet any of the three criteria necessary for recognition of revenue over time.

IFRS 15 core principle

The core principle of IFRS 15 is that revenue reflects the transfer of promised goods or services to customers in an amount that reflects the consideration to which the entity expects to be entitled in exchange for those goods or services.

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Electricity revenue recognition example

Electricity revenue recognition example

Application of the five-step model

Facts: Bundle Seller Co (‘Seller’) and Bundle Buyer Co (‘Buyer’) executed an agreement for the purchase and sale of 1oMW of electricity per hour and the associated renewable energy credits (‘RECs’) (one REC for each MWh) at a fixed bundled price (‘the agreement’ or ‘the PPA’). The contract term begins on 1 January 20X1 and ends on 31 December 20X4, and the fixed bundled price during each of those respective years is $200, $205, $210 and $215.

The increase in the bundled price represents the increase in the forward price of electricity and RECs over the term of Electricity revenue recognition examplethe agreement as of the acquisition date. Control, including title to and risk of loss related to the electricity, will pass and transfer on delivery at a single point on the electricity grid. Control, including title to and risk of loss related to RECs, will pass and transfer when the associated electricity is delivered.

Seller and other market participants frequently execute contracts for the purchase and sale of electricity and RECs on a stand-alone basis.

Seller concluded that this arrangement does not contain a lease (that is, no property, plant or equipment is explicitly or implicitly identified). The electricity element of this arrangement qualifies for the ‘own use’ exception and thus is not accounted for as a derivative. The REC element has no net settlement characteristics. As such, each element of this agreement is within the scope of IFRS 15.

Electricity revenue recognition – IFRS 15 step-by-step

Step 1 – Identify the contract with a customer

This agreement, including each of its elements (that is, electricity and RECs), is within the scope of the standard, and collection of the contract consideration is considered probable.

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Acquisitions and mergers as per IFRS 3

Acquisitions and mergers

Acquisitions and mergers are becoming more and more common as entities aim to achieve their growth objectives. IFRS 3 ‘Business Combinations’ contains the requirements for these transactions, which are challenging in practice.

This narrative sets out how an entity should determine if the transaction is a business combination, and whether it is within the scope of IFRS 3.

Identifying a business combination

IFRS 3 refers to a ‘business combination’ rather than more commonly used phrases such as takeover, acquisition or Acquisitions and mergersmerger because the objective is to encompass all the transactions in which an acquirer obtains control over an acquiree no matter how the transaction is structured. A business combination is defined as a transaction or other event in which an acquirer (an investor entity) obtains control of one or more businesses.

An entity’s purchase of a controlling interest in another unrelated operating entity will usually be a business combination (see case below).

Case – Straightforward business combination

Entity T is a clothing manufacturer and has traded for a number of years. Entity T is deemed to be a business.

On 1 January 2020, Entity A pays CU 2,000 to acquire 100% of the ordinary voting shares of Entity T. No other type of shares has been issued by Entity T. On the same day, the three main executive directors of Entity A take on the same roles in Entity T.

Consider this…..

Entity A obtains control on 1 January 2020 by acquiring 100% of the voting rights. As Entity T is a business, this is a business combination in accordance with IFRS 3.

However, a business combination may be structured, and an entity may obtain control of that structure, in a variety of ways.

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Bill-and-hold arrangements in IFRS 15

Bill-and-hold arrangements

Bill-and-hold arrangements occur when an entity bills a customer for a product that it transfers at a point in time, but retains physical possession of the product until it is transferred to the customer at a future point in time. This might occur to accommodate a customer’s lack of available space for the product or delays in production schedules. [IFRS 15.B79]

To determine when to recognize revenue, an entity needs to determine when the customer obtains control of the product. Generally, this occurs at shipment or delivery to the customer, depending on the contract terms (for discussion of the indicators for transfer of control at a point in time, see Performance obligations satisfied at a point in time from Step 5 IFRS 15 in the link). The new standard provides criteria that have to be met for a customer to obtain control of a product in a bill-and-hold arrangement. These are illustrated below. [IFRS 15.B80–B81]

Bill-and-hold arrangements

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5 steps in IFRS 15 – best quick read

5 steps in IFRS 15

Under IFRS 15 Revenue from contracts with customers, entities apply the 5 steps in IFRS 15 to determine when to recognize revenue, and at what amount. The model specifies that revenue is recognized when or as an entity transfers control of goods or services to a customer at the amount to which the entity expects to be entitled. Depending on whether certain criteria are met, revenue is recognized:

  • over time, in a manner that best reflects the entity’s performance; or
  • at a point in time, when control of the goods or services is transferred to the customer.

IFRS 15 provides application guidance on numerous related topics, including warranties and licenses. It also provides guidance on when to capitalize the costs of obtaining a contract and some costs of fulfilling a contract (specifically those that are not addressed in other relevant authoritative guidance – e.g. for inventory).

5 steps in IFRS 15 – What is IFRS 15?

Step 1: Identify the contract with a customer

A contract with a customer is in the scope of IFRS 15 when the contract is legally enforceable and certain criteria are met. If the criteria are not met, then the contract does not exist for purposes of applying the general model of IFRS 15, and any consideration received from the customer is generally recognized as a deposit (liability). Contracts entered into at or near the same time with the same customer (or a related party of the customer) are combined and treated as a single contract when certain criteria are met.

A contract with a customer is in the scope of IFRS 15 when it is legally enforceable and meets all of the following criteria. [IFRS 15.9]

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Transfer pricing – IAS 12 Best complete read

Transfer pricing
 for
transactions between related parties

A transfer price is the price charged between related parties (e.g., a parent company and its controlled foreign corporation) in an inter-company transaction. Although inter-company transactions are eliminated when consolidating the financial results of controlled foreign corporations and their domestic parents, for preparation of individual tax returns each entity (or a tax consolidation unit of more than one entity in the group in one and the same tax jurisdiction) prepares stand-alone (or a tax consolidation unit) tax returns.

See also:

IAS 24 Related parties narrative IFRS 15 Revenue narrative IAS 12 Income tax narrative

Transfer prices directly affect the allocation of group-wide taxable income across national tax jurisdictions. Hence, a group’s transfer-pricing policies can directly affect its after-tax income to the extent that tax rates differ across national jurisdictions.

Arm’s length transaction principle

Most OECD countries rely upon the OECD TP Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises and Tax Administrations, that were originally released in 1995 and subsequently updated in 2017 (OECD TP Guidelines). The OECD TP Guidelines reaffirmed the OECD’s commitment to the arm’s length transaction principle.

In fact, the arm’s length transaction principle is considered “the closest approximation of the workings of the open market in cases where goods and services are transferred between associated enterprises.” The arm’s length principle implies that transfer prices between related parties should be set as though the entities were operating at arm’s length (i.e. were independent enterprises).

The application of the arm’s length transaction principle is generally based on a comparison of all the relevant conditions in a controlled transaction with the conditions in an uncontrolled transaction (i.e. a transaction between independent enterprises).

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Revenue definition

Revenue definition

Revenue is defined in IFRS 15 as: ‘Income arising in the course of an entity’s ordinary activities‘.

IFRS 15 establishes a single and comprehensive framework which sets out how much revenue is to be recognised, and when. The core principle is that a vendor should recognise revenue to depict the transfer of promised goods or services to customers in an amount that reflects the consideration to which the vendor expects to be entitled in exchange for those goods or services.

The application of the core principle in IFRS 15 is carried out in five steps:

revenue definition

The five-step model is applied to individual contracts. However, as a practical expedient, IFRS 15 permits an entity to apply the model to a portfolio of contracts (or performance obligations) with similar characteristics if the entity reasonably expects that the effects would not differ materially from applying it to individual contracts.

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