IFRS 15 revenue policies, automotive, incentives, warranties, repurchase arrangements, bill and hold, significant judgements and estimates

Jaguar Land Rover Automotive plc – Annual report – 31 March 2020

Industry: automotive

2 Accounting policies (extract)

Revenue recognition

Revenue comprises the consideration earned by the Group in respect of the output of its ordinary activities. It is measured based on the consideration specified in the contract with the customer and excludes amounts collected on behalf of third parties, and net of settlement discounts, bonuses, rebates and sales incentives. The Group considers its primary customers from the sale of vehicles, parts and accessories (its primary revenue-generating streams) are generally retailers, fleet and corporate customers, and other third-party distributors. The Group recognises revenue when it transfers control of a good or service to a customer, thus evidencing the satisfaction of the associated performance obligation under that contract.

As described in note 37, the Group operates with a single automotive reporting segment, principally generating revenue from the sales of vehicles, parts and accessories.

The sale of vehicles also can include additional services provided to the customer at the point of sale, for which the individual vehicle and services are accounted for as separate performance obligations, as they are considered separately identifiable. The contract transaction price is allocated among the identified performance obligations based on their stand-alone selling prices. Where the stand-alone selling price is not readily available and observable, it is estimated using an appropriate alternative approach.

Use of estimates and judgements (extract)

Judgements (extract)

Revenue recognition: Vehicle revenue, as the primary source of income for the Group, is recognised when control of the vehicle passes to the customer, which the Group has assessed is when the vehicle is either despatched or held on behalf of the customer but depends on the underlying terms of the customer contract. Control of an asset refers to having the ability to direct the use of the asset and obtain substantially all of the remaining economic benefit.

The transfer of control depends on the consideration of a number of facts and circumstances surrounding the relevant transaction, such as the transfer of risks and rewards of ownership, transfer of legal title, transfer of physical possession, customer acceptance and whether or not an entity has a present right to payment. The Group determines the transfer of control with reference to those factors, thus ultimately driving revenue recognition.

In some instances, the Group recognises revenue on a bill-and-hold basis where control of the vehicle has been transferred to the customer but physical possession is retained by the Group (for example, within a vehicle holding compound) until a future point in time. Revenue is recognised on the meeting of bill-and-hold criteria, which are considered to be met as the reason for the bill-and-hold is substantive (as the customer requests JLR to retain possession, usually due to a lack of available space at their own premises), the vehicles are identifiable as separately belonging to the customer (on the basis that each vehicle has a unique Vehicle Identification Number), the vehicle must be ready for physical transfer to the customer (which it is, given that it is fully built and safety-checked off the manufacturing line) and the Group does not have the ability to use the vehicle or direct it elsewhere.

The Group assessed the impact of COVID-19 and the associated regional and national lockdowns across the world in ensuring its revenue recognition judgments continued to be applied appropriately, given logistics challenges across many markets that the Group operates in.

Significant estimates (extract)

Other estimates (extracts)

Product warranties: The Group provides product warranties on all new vehicle sales. Provisions are generally recognised when vehicles are sold or when new warranty programmes are initiated. Based on historical warranty claim experience, assumptions have to be made on the type and extent of future warranty claims and customer goodwill (representing the Group’s constructive obligation to its customers when managing those warranty claims), as well as on possible recall campaigns. These assessments are based on experience of the frequency and extent of vehicle faults and defects in the past. In addition, the estimates also include assumptions on the amounts of potential repair costs per vehicle and the effects of possible time or mileage limits. The provisions are regularly adjusted to reflect new information. Refer to note 27.

The Group also has back-to-back contractual arrangements with its suppliers in the event that a vehicle fault is proven to be a supplier’s fault. Estimates are made of the expected reimbursement claims based upon historical levels of recoveries by supplier, adjusted for inflation and applied to the population of vehicles under warranty at the balance sheet date. Supplier reimbursement claims are presented as separate assets in note 16.

The Group notes that changes in the automotive environment regarding the increasing impact of battery electric vehicles presents its own significant challenges, particularly due to the lack of historical data available at this time to help inform estimates for future warranty claims, as well as any associated recoveries from suppliers due to such claims. The related provisions are therefore made with the Group’s best estimate at this time to settle such obligations in the future but will be required to be continually refined as sufficient, real-world data becomes available. Supplier recoveries are recognised only when the Group considers there to be virtual certainty over the reimbursement, which also requires historical evidence to support.

Variable marketing expense: The Group offers sales incentives in the form of variable marketing expense to customers, which vary depending on the timing and customer of any subsequent sale of the vehicle. This sales incentive is accounted for as a revenue reduction and is constrained to a level that is highly probable not to reverse the amount of revenue recognised when any associated uncertainty is subsequently resolved. The Group estimates the expected sales incentive by market and considers uncertainties including competitor pricing, ageing of retailer stock and local market conditions. The constraint on variable consideration is estimated with reference to historical accuracy, the current position of market conditions and a future-looking assessment considering relevant geopolitical factors, including the impact of the global stock positions for both the Group and its third party retailer network reflecting the pipeline of vehicle inventory for sale to end customers.