Steven Vermeeren (Eldi): “Our annual audit runs like clockwork”
The family-owned electrical goods chain Eldi chose VGD as its audit partner a few years ago. “VGD is well and truly at home in the SME sector”, says director Steven Vermeeren. “That’s a big plus for a company such as ours”.
Eldi was founded in 1972 and is the only remaining family-owned Belgian player in a competitive market full of international giants. “We set ourselves apart from our competitors with personal service and a close-knit network of subsidiaries in carefully selected locations”, Vermeeren says.
Well and truly at home in the SME sector
“As regards turnover and number of employees, we fall under the definition of a large company, but when it comes to organisational structure we look more like a small enterprise”, Steven explains. “So around five years ago we decided to look for a new audit partner that was well and truly at home in the SME sector. Various contacts recommended VGD.”
“Tom Van Hulle has been our permanent contact person since day one”, Steven goes on. “We can call on him at any time whatsoever, and that has led to us building up a genuine bond of trust over the years.”
Familiar faces provide for stability
Eldi counts on VGD for the annual statutory audit. Steven: “This runs like clockwork every time. We start out by discussing what we expect of each other in the planning meeting. We are perfectly aware of what we have to deliver, which means VGD can prepare the audit to perfection before subsequently carrying it out at our premises without any problems or delays. That comprehensive preparation results in us all rowing in the same direction from the word go.”
“The team almost always consists of the same people, headed up by company auditor Jurgen Lelie. That stability merely facilitates the process, and also explains why we also enlist the services of our permanent audit team for other audit assignments as well”.
After the annual audit Steven and his accountant sit down with the auditors to discuss the management letter – a memo containing the priority issues or concerns arising from the audit report. “In that meeting we take plenty of time to check whether the figures are in line with our outlook and objectives. If there is something wrong, we set about looking for the possible causes together. This check provides us with the assurance that we are running the company correctly.”
Ready for the future
To remain competitive in the highly competitive electrical goods sector, Steven has been working for some years now on optimising his organisational structure. “VGD supports us in that process”, he says. “The auditors couple far-reaching diagnostic reviews of our different departments with targeted recommendations. This enables us to take the right decisions designed to make ours a future-proof organisation”.