Independent Auditors' Report

We have audited the financial statements of AFH Financial Group Plc (the ‘parent company’) and its subsidiaries (the ‘group’) for the year ended 31 October 2017 which comprise the Consolidated Statement of Comprehensive Income, the Consolidated and Parent Company Statements of Financial Position, the Consolidated and Parent Company Statements of Changes in Equity, the Consolidated Statement of Cash Flows and the notes to the financial statements, including a summary of significant accounting policies. The financial reporting framework that has been applied in their preparation is applicable law and International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRSs) as adopted by the European Union and, as regards the parent company financial statements, as applied in accordance with the provisions of the Companies Act 2006.

In our opinion:

  • the financial statements give a true and fair view of the state of the group’s and of the parent company’s affairs as at 31 October 2017 and of the group’s profit for the year then ended;
  • the group financial statements have been properly prepared in accordance with IFRSs as adopted by the European Union;
  • the parent company financial statements have been properly prepared in accordance with IFRSs as adopted by the European Union and as applied in accordance with the provisions of the Companies Act 2006; and
  • the financial statements have been prepared in accordance with the requirements of the Companies Act 2006

Basis for opinion
We conducted our audit in accordance with International Standards on Auditing (UK) (ISAs (UK)) and applicable law. Our responsibilities under those standards are further described in the Auditor’s responsibilities for the audit of the financial statements section of our report. We are independent of the company in accordance with the ethical requirements that are relevant to our audit of the financial statements in the UK, including the FRC’s Ethical Standard as applied to listed entities and we have fulfilled our other ethical responsibilities in accordance with these requirements. We believe that the audit evidence we have obtained is sufficient and appropriate to provide a basis for our opinion.

Conclusions relating to going concern
We have nothing to report in respect of the following matters in relation to which the ISAs (UK) require us to report to you where:

  • the directors’ use of the going concern basis of accounting in the preparation of the financial statements is not appropriate; or
  • the directors have not disclosed in the financial statements any identified material uncertainties that may cast significant doubt about the group’s or the parent company’s ability to continue to adopt the going concern basis of accounting for a period of at least twelve months from the date when the financial statements are authorised for issue.

Key audit matters
Key audit matters are those matters that, in our professional judgement, were of most significance in our audit of the financial statements of the current period and include the most significant assessed risks of material misstatement (whether or not due to fraud) we identified, including those which had the greatest effect on: the overall audit strategy, the allocation of resources in the audit; and directing the efforts of the engagement team. These matters were addressed in the context of our audit of the financial statements as a whole, and in forming our opinion thereon, and we do not provide a separate opinion on these matters.

Revenue Recognition
Due to the probable high significance of revenue to any user of the AFH Financial Group plc financial statements, recognition of revenue is considered to be a key audit matter.

Revenue Recognition
Our procedures over revenue recognition included, but were not limited to:

  • Documentation and critical assessment of revenue recognition and year-end revenue cut-off procedures to ensure that these are appropriate
  • Walking through the key controls pertaining to the recognition of revenue.
  • Testing in detail samples from the underlying data including checking that these were consistent with third party evidence.
  • Reviewing and reconciling cash receipts, both during the year and post year end, to the reported revenue balance.
  • Reviewing the procedures for setting-up new clients and a detailed review of key reconciliations and any accounting adjustments triggered by this exercise.

No material misstatements were identified as a result of the audit procedures performed.

Client portfolios – impairment assessment
As at 31 October 2017 the Client Portfolio intangible asset totalled £36.5m, making this the largest asset held on the statement of financial position. Management are required to consider on at least an annual basis whether there is any indication of an impairment in relation to this balance. This assessment requires management to exercise their judgement when considering future cashflows and the application of an appropriate discount rate.

Our response
Our procedures in relation to management’s Client Portfolios impairment assessment included, but were not limited to:

  • Reviewed in detail management’s calculations of forecasted performance and compared to historical performance
  • Assess the appropriateness of all key assumptionsadopted such as the discount rate
  • Corroborated their supporting calculations and commentary to other evidence.

No material misstatements were identified as a result of the audit procedures performed.

Our application of materiality
We apply the concept of materiality both in planning and performing our audit, and in evaluating the effect of misstatements on the financial statements and our audit. Materiality is used so we can plan and perform our audit to obtain reasonable, rather than absolute, assurance about whether the financial statements are free from material misstatement. The level of materiality we set is based on our assessment of the magnitude of misstatements that individually or in aggregate, could reasonably be expected to have influence on the economic decisions the users of the financial statements may take based on the information included in the financial statements.

Based on our professional judgement the level of overall materiality we set for the financial statements is £313,000. Materiality has been determined with reference to a benchmark of Profit before tax, of which it represents 9%.

We used profit before tax to calculate our materiality as, in our view, this is the most relevant measure of the underlying financial performance of the company. We agreed with the Audit Committee that we would report to the Committee all audit differences in excess of £9,400 as well as differences below that threshold  that, in our view, warranted reporting on qualitative grounds. We also report to the Audit Committee on disclosure matters that we identified during the course of assessing the overall presentation of the financial statements.

Other information
The directors are responsible for the other information. The other information comprises the information included in the annual report, other than the financial statements and our auditor’s report thereon. Our opinion on the financial statements does not cover the other information and, except to the extent otherwise explicitly stated in our report, we do not express any form of assurance conclusion thereon.

In connection with our audit of the financial statements, our responsibility is to read the other information and, in doing so, consider whether the other information is materially inconsistent with the financial statements or our knowledge obtained in the audit or otherwise appears to be materially misstated. If we identify such material inconsistencies or apparent material misstatements, we are required to determine whether there is a material misstatement in the financial statements or a material misstatement of the other information. If, based on the work we have performed, we conclude that there is a material misstatement of this other information, we are required to report that fact.

We have nothing to report in this regard

Opinions on other matters prescribed by the Companies Act 2006
In our opinion, based on the work undertaken in the course of the audit:

  • the information given in the Strategic Report and the Directors’ Report for the financial year for which the financial statements are prepared is consistent with the financial statements; and
  • the Strategic Report and the Directors’ Report have been prepared in accordance with applicable legal requirements.

Matters on which we are required to report by exception
In light of the knowledge and understanding of the group and the parent company and its environment obtained in the course of the audit, we have not identified material misstatements in the Strategic Report or the Directors’ Report. We have nothing to report in respect of the following matters in relation to which the Companies Act 2006 requires us to report to you if, in our opinion:

  • adequate accounting records have not been kept by the parent company, or returns adequate for our audit have not been received from branches not visited by us; or
  • the parent company financial statements are not in agreement with the accounting records and returns; or
  • certain disclosures of directors’ remuneration specific by law are not made; or
  • we have not received all the information and explanations we require for our audit.

Responsibilites of Directors
As explained more fully in the directors’ responsibilities statement set out on page 23, the directors are responsible for the  preparation of the financial statements and for being satisfied that they give a true and fair view, and for such internal control as the directors determine is necessary to enable the preparation of financial statements that are free from material misstatement, whether due to fraud or error.

In preparing the financial statements, the directors are responsible for assessing the group’s and the parent company’s ability to continue as a going concern, disclosing, as applicable, matters related to going concern and using the going concern basis of accounting unless the directors either intend to liquidate the group or the parent company or to cease operations, or have no realistic alternative but to do so.

Auditor’s responsibilites for the audit of the financial statements
Our objectives are to obtain reasonable assurance about whether the financial statements as a whole are free from material misstatement, whether due to fraud or error, and to issue an auditor’s report that includes our opinion. Reasonable assurance is a high level of assurance, but is not a guarantee that an audit conducted in accordance with ISAs (UK) will always detect a material misstatement when it exists. Misstatements can arise from fraud or error and are considered material if, individually or in the aggregate, they could reasonably be expected to influence the economic decisions of users taken on the basis of these financial statements.

Our responsibility is to audit and express an opinion on the financial statements in accordance with applicable law and International Standards on Auditing (UK). Those standards require us to comply with the Financial Reporting Council’s Ethical Standard. This report is made solely to the company’s members as a body in accordance with Chapter 3 of Part 16 of the Companies Act 2006. Our audit work has been undertaken so that we might state to the company’s members those matters we are required to state to them in an auditor’s report and for no other purpose. To the fullest extent permitted by law, we do not accept or assume responsibility to anyone other than the company and the company’s members as a body for our audit work, for this report, or for the opinions we have formed.

A further description of our responsibilities for the audit of the financial statements is located on the Financial Reporting Council’s website at www.frc.org.uk/auditors responsibilities. This description forms part of our auditor’s report.

 

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Louis Burns (Senior Statutory Auditor)
for and on behalf of Mazars LLP
Chartered Accountants and Statutory Auditor
45 Church Street
Birmingham
B3 2RT

29 January 2018

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