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Performance management system

In order to set and achieve our strategic goals more effectively, we pursue a Group-wide, value-oriented performance management approach. We use a specific set of performance indicators to reliably and transparently measure success. The following tables and information provide an overview of our key financial and non-financial performance indicators.

Financial performance indicators

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2020

2019

2018

2017

2016

ROCE

%

4.6

5.1

4.7

5.8

5.7

Net revenue

billions of €

101.0

80.5

75.7

74.9

73.1

Profit (loss) from operations (EBIT)

billions of €

12.8

9.5

8.0

9.4

9.2

EBITDA AL (adjusted for special factors)a

billions of €

35.0

24.7

23.1

n.a.

n.a.

Free cash flow AL (before dividend payments and spectrum investment)a, b

billions of €

6.3

7.0

6.1

n.a.

n.a.

Cash capex (before spectrum investment)

billions of €

(17.0)

(13.1)

(12.2)

(12.1)

(11.0)

Rating (Standard & Poor’s, Fitch)

 

BBB, BBB+

BBB+

BBB+

BBB+

BBB+

Rating (Moody’s)

 

Baa1

Baa1

Baa1

Baa1

Baa1

a

Comparatives for 2018 were calculated on a pro forma basis for the key performance indicators redefined as of January 1, 2019 following the introduction of the IFRS 16 accounting standard.

b

Before interest payments for zero-coupon bonds and before termination of forward-payer swaps at T‑Mobile US.

Since the start of the 2019 financial year, we have taken the effects of the first-time application of IFRS 16 “Leases” into account when determining our financial performance indicators. The calculation of ROCE was adjusted in line with IFRS 16 with minimal impact on the overall amount. Following this change, we now measure our operating earnings performance on the basis of EBITDA AL and no longer on the basis of EBITDA. Free cash flow was replaced by free cash flow AL. For purposes of better comparability, comparative figures were calculated on a pro forma basis for the 2018 financial year; all other prior-year figures were not adjusted retrospectively.

Profitability

We have incorporated sustainable growth in enterprise value into our medium-term aims and implemented it as a separate KPI (key performance indicator) for the entire Group. Return on capital employed (ROCE) is a key performance indicator at Group level. ROCE is the ratio of operating result after depreciation, amortization and impairment losses plus imputed taxes (net operating profit after taxes, NOPAT) to the average value of the assets tied up in the course of the year (net operating assets, NOA).

Our goal is to achieve or exceed the return targets imposed on us by providers of debt capital and equity on the basis of capital market requirements. We measure return targets using the weighted average cost of capital (WACC).

NOPAT is an earnings indicator derived from the income statement, taking an imputed tax expense into consideration. It does not include cost of capital.

NOA includes all assets that make a direct contribution to revenue generation. These include all elements on the asset side of the consolidated statement of financial position that are essential to the rendering of services. Operating working capital is calculated from trade receivables, inventories, and trade and other payables. The figure for other provisions is deducted as no return target exists for this.

Revenue and earnings

Revenue corresponds to the value of our operating activities. Absolute revenue depends on how well we are able to sell our products and services on the market. The development of our revenue is an essential indicator for measuring the Company’s success. New products and services as well as additional sales activities are only successful if they increase revenue.

EBITDA corresponds to EBIT (profit/loss from operations) before depreciation, amortization and impairment losses. EBIT and EBITDA measure the short-term operational performance and the success of individual business areas. In order to ensure maximum comparability with our previous KPIs following the application of IFRS 16 as of January 1, 2019, starting in the 2019 financial year we have measured our operating earnings performance on the basis of EBITDA AL – i.e., EBITDA adjusted for depreciation of right-of-use assets and for interest expenses on recognized lease liabilities. In addition to these absolute indicators, we also use the EBIT and EBITDA AL margins to show how these indicators develop in relation to revenue. This makes it possible to compare the earnings performance of profit-oriented units of different sizes. Taking unadjusted EBIT/EBITDA AL as performance indicators means special factors are also taken into account. This promotes a holistic view of our expenses. However, special factors have an impact on the presentation of operations, making it more difficult to compare performance indicators with corresponding figures for prior periods. For this reason, we additionally adjust our performance indicators to provide transparency. Without this adjustment, statements about the future development of earnings are only possible to a limited extent. The adjusted values are calculated on the basis of the unadjusted performance indicators.

For the reconciliation of EBITDA AL, EBIT, and net profit/loss to the respective figures adjusted for special factors, please refer to the section “Development of business in the Group.”

Financial flexibility

Free cash flow AL (before dividend payments and spectrum investment) is calculated as net cash from operating activities less net cash outflows for investments in intangible assets (excluding goodwill) and property, plant and equipment, as well as the principal portion of repayment of lease liabilities – excluding finance leases at T‑Mobile US. Free cash flow AL is a key yardstick for providers of debt capital and equity. It measures the potential for further developing our Company, for generating organic growth, and for the ability to pay dividends and repay debt.

Cash capex (before spectrum investment) relates to cash outflows for investments in intangible assets (excluding goodwill) and property, plant and equipment, which are relevant for cash outflows as a component of free cash flow.

A rating is an assessment or classification of the creditworthiness of debt securities and its issuer according to uniform criteria. Assessment of creditworthiness by rating agencies influences interest rates on debt securities and thus also our borrowing costs. As part of our finance policy, we have defined a target range for our ratings. We believe that with a rating between A- and BBB (Standard & Poor’s, Fitch) or between A3 and Baa2 (Moody’s) we essentially have the necessary entry to the capital markets to generate the required financing.

Non-financial performance indicators

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2020

2019

2018

2017

2016

Customer satisfaction (TRI*M index)

 

72.2

67.3

67.7

68.6

70.2

Employee satisfaction (commitment index)a

 

4.0

4.0

4.1

4.1

4.1

Fixed-network and mobile customers

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mobile customersb

millions

241.8

184.0

178.4

168.4

165.0

Fixed-network lines

millions

27.4

27.5

27.9

27.9

28.5

Broadband customersc, d

millions

21.7

21.0

20.2

18.9

18.4

Systems Solutions

 

 

 

 

 

 

Order entrye

millions of €

4,588

4,740

6,776

5,241

6,851

a

Commitment index determined on the basis of the employee surveys carried out in 2019 and 2017.

b

Including T‑Mobile US wholesale customers.

c

Excluding wholesale.

d

Starting in the second quarter of 2018, we no longer report the number of broadband lines from a technical perspective. Instead, we report the number of broadband customers. The figures for 2016 and 2017 have been adjusted accordingly.

e

Order entry for the 2019 financial year was adjusted retrospectively in connection with the realignment of the B2B telecommunications business.

We want our customers to be satisfied – or even delighted – as satisfied customers act as multipliers for our Company’s success. As a responsible, service-oriented company, the needs and opinions of our customers are of great importance to us, and we want them to stay with our Company in the long term. For this reason we measure customer retention/satisfaction in our companies using the globally recognized TRI*M method. The results of systematic surveys are expressed by an indicator known as the TRI*M index. To underscore the major significance of customer retention/satisfaction for our operations, in 2010 we made this key indicator one of four parameters for the long-term variable remuneration (Variable II) for our Board of Management members and in 2015 included it as part of the Long-Term Incentive Plan (LTIP) for managers (excluding Board of Management members). We take the TRI*M indexes calculated for the operating entities (excluding T‑Mobile US) as an approximation of the respective entities’ percentage of total revenue to create an aggregate TRI*M Group value. Over a period of four years, the eligible managers can benefit from the development of customer retention/satisfaction across the Group.

For further information on customer satisfaction, please refer to the section “Group strategy.”

Our employees want to contribute to the further development of the Company and identify with it. We want to establish an open dialog and a productive exchange with our employees: New ways of working and modern means of communication help us achieve this, as do regular surveys. The most important feedback instruments across the Group (excluding T‑Mobile US) for assessing employee satisfaction include regular employee surveys and the pulse survey carried out twice a year. In our Company, we measure the employee satisfaction performance indicator using the commitment index – derived from the results of the last employee survey.

For further information about employee satisfaction, please refer to the section “Employees.”

In view of the major significance of employee satisfaction for the success of the Company, Board of Management members are now also being managed and incentivized by means of the long-term variable performance-based remuneration (Variable II). Employee feedback as one of four parameters has been relevant for Variable II since 2010, and for the Long-Term Incentive Plan (LTIP) which was launched in 2015 for our managers (excluding Board of Management members). This allows Board members and eligible managers to benefit from the development of employee satisfaction across the Group.

As one of the leading providers of telecommunications and information technology worldwide, the development of our Group – and thus also our financial performance indicators – is closely linked to the development of customer figures. Acquiring and retaining customers are thus essential to the success of our Company. We have different ways of measuring the development of our customer figures according to the business activity in our operating segments: Depending on the activities of each segment, we measure the number of mobile customers and/or the number of broadband customers and fixed-network lines.

In our Systems Solutions operating segment, we use order entry as a non-financial performance indicator. We define and calculate order entry as the total of all amounts resulting from customer orders received in the financial year. Order entry in the form of long-term contracts is of great significance to the Group in order to estimate revenue potential. In other words, order entry is an indicator that provides a high degree of planning reliability.

Fixed-network lines
Lines in operation excluding internal use and public telecommunications, including IP-based lines. The totals reported in the combined management report were calculated on the basis of precise figures and rounded to millions or thousands. Percentages were calculated on the basis of the figures shown.
Glossary
Mobile customers
In the combined management report, one mobile communications card corresponds to one customer. The totals were calculated on the basis of precise figures and rounded to millions or thousands. Percentages were calculated on the basis of the figures shown (see also SIM card).
Glossary