The Private Equity Reporting Group (PERG) was established in March 2008 to monitor the industry’s compliance with the Walker Guidelines and make periodic recommendations to the British Private Equity and Venture Capital Association (the “BVCA”).
This was in response to the increased scrutiny from stakeholders and the desire to understand more about the private equity industry’s approach to the businesses they invest in.
Since 2007, private equity firms operating in the UK have embraced and adopted the Walker Guidelines with over 70 of the largest UK private equity-backed companies currently:
- providing additional disclosures in their annual financial statements voluntarily; and
- making these accessible on the company websites.
What is the role of PERG?
- To review the extent of conformity with the guidelines of large UK private equity backed companies, through compliance or explanation, on an ongoing basis.
- To publish an annual report (The PERG Report) on the work of the Group.
- To review the EY performance report and provide the BVCA with comments.
- To keep the guidelines under review and to make recommendations for changes when necessary to be implemented by the BVCA (after due consultation) to ensure that the Guidelines remain appropriate in changing market and industry circumstances.
At the beginning of 2007, Sir David Walker was asked by the BVCA and a group of major private equity firms to undertake an independent review of the adequacy of disclosure and transparency in private equity. Sir David completed this with a view to recommending a set of guidelines by the industry on a voluntary basis.
Private equity, via the implementation of the Walker Guidelines, is focused on demonstrating its commitment to transparency by publishing additional information on its largest UK businesses publicly.
The Private Equity Reporting Group (PERG), formed to monitor implementation, reviews private equity’s compliance with the Walker Guidelines annually with support from the BVCA, PwC and EY.
Each year this review is finalised with the publication of three reports.
Private Equity Reporting Group review report
This review sets out the findings from PERG’s annual review of the private equity industry’s compliance with the Walker Guidelines. This report has a focus on compliance with the disclosure and publication requirements for company annual financial statements and mid-year reports. A sample of financial statements is reviewed by PwC each year for PERG to see how disclosures compare to FTSE 250 reporting.
EY report on the performance of portfolio companies
This report presents aggregated data collected by EY from private equity firms and their portfolio companies. It tracks the performance of portfolio companies under private equity ownership against listed companies and other benchmarks.
PwC Good Practice Guide
This guide includes examples of good practice reporting by companies reviewed by PwC this year. It also provides guidance on what is required for the company annual financial statements.