Notes to the condensed financial statements

Invested capital

Invested capital at year-end 2016 totaled €10.3 billion, up on year-end 2015. The acquisition of BASF’s Industrial Coatings business impacted invested capital by €0.4 billion.

In 2016, we invested €634 million (2015: €651 million) in property, plant and equipment.

Invested capital

in € millions

December 31, 2015

December 31, 2016

Trade receivables






Trade payables



Operating working capital



Other working capital items



Non-current assets



Less investments in associates and joint ventures



Less pension assets



Deferred tax liabilities



Invested capital



Operating working capital

In % of revenue


The net balance sheet position (IAS19) of the pension plans at year-end 2016 was a deficit of €1.0 billion (year-end 2015: €0.6 billion). This was the result of the net effect of:

  • Lower discount rate in key countries
  • De-risking of pension liabilities through non-cash buy-in transactions totaling €3.3 billion (a €0.2 billion buy-in in the ICI Specialty Chemicals Pension Fund in Q4 and €3.1 billion buy-ins in the ICI Pension Fund in the first three quarters), which together led to an adverse €0.6 billion impact in Other comprehensive income

Offset by:

  • Top-up payments of €297 million, including €33 million out of escrow account, predominantly into certain UK pension plans
  • Higher asset returns


At year-end 2016, the number of people employed was 1% higher at 46,000 (year-end 2015: 45,600), mainly due to the acquisition of BASF’s Industrial Coatings business. With the introduction of our Global Business Services (GBS) organization as of January 1, 2016, some people are now reported at corporate level instead of within the Business Areas.

Accounting policies and restatements

The full-year 2016 numbers included in the primary statements are derived from the financial statements 2016. These financial statements have been authorized for issue. The financial statements have not yet been published by law and still have to be adopted by the general meeting of shareholders. In accordance with section 393 of Book 2 of the Netherlands Civil Code, PriceWaterhouseCoopers Accountants N.V. has issued an unqualified auditor’s opinion on these financial statements, which will be published on March 1, 2017. All quarterly figures are unaudited. In 2016 some new IFRS accounting standards and interpretations thereof have been implemented, however, these had no material impact on our financial statements. Otherwise the accounting principles are the same as applied in the 2015 financial statements.


Revenue and results in Decorative Paints are impacted by seasonal influences. Revenue and profitability tend to be higher in the second and third quarter of the year as weather conditions determine whether paints and coatings can be applied. In Performance Coatings, revenue and profitability vary with building patterns from original equipment manufacturers. In Specialty Chemicals, the Functional Chemicals and the Surface Chemistry businesses experience seasonal influences. Revenue and profitability are affected by developments in the agricultural season and tend to be higher in the first half of the year.

Other activities

In other activities, we report activities which are not allocated to a particular Business Area. Corporate costs are the unallocated costs of our head office and shared services center in the Netherlands and also include country holdings. Pensions reflects pension costs after the elimination of interest cost (reported as financing expenses). Insurances are the results from our captive insurance companies. Other costs include the cost of share-based compensation, the results of treasury and legacy operations.

Human Cities project transforms neighborhood in Uruguay
Eighty artists helped to transform a neighborhood in Montevideo, Uruguay, as part of a Human Cities initiative developed by AkzoNobel’s Inca paint brand. The eye-catching event saw muralists, graffiti artists and painters take to the streets of La Teja to create murals on more than 40 walls to help brighten up the lives of local people and make their surroundings more liveable and inspiring. The walls were chosen jointly by neighbors and the artists.