40. Notes to the cash flow statement

In accordance with IAS 7 (Statement of Cash Flows), the consolidated statement of cash flows describes changes in the Group’s “cash and cash” equivalents through cash inflows and outflows during the reporting year.

The item “cash and cash equivalents” includes cheques and cash on hand as well as cash in transit and bank deposits with a remaining term of up to 3 months.

The cash flow statement distinguishes between changes in cash levels from operating, investing and financing activities. Cash flows from discontinued operations are shown separately where they concern discontinued operations.

In December 2012, the assets and liabilities of Real’s Eastern European business were classified as “assets held for sale” and “liabilities related to assets held for sale”, respectively. The reclassified assets included cash and cash equivalents of €66 million.

During the financial year, net cash provided by operating activities amounted to €2,340 million (previous year: €2,092 million). Impairment losses concern property, plant and equipment at €1,198 million (previous year: €1,159 million), intangible assets at €252 million (previous year: €174 million) and “investment properties” at €13 million (previous year: €17 million). In the context of the divestment of the cash & carry business in the United Kingdom, this disposal group was devalued by €172 million. On the other hand, reversals of impairment losses amount to €12 million (previous year: €34 million).

The change in net working capital amounts to €80 million (previous year: €–174 million) and includes changes in inventories, trade receivables and receivables due from suppliers included in the item “other financial and non-financial assets”, credit card receivables and prepayments made on inventories. In addition, the item includes changes in trade liabilities and liabilities to customers, deferred sales related to vouchers, customer loyalty programmes, provisions for customer loyalty programmes and rights of return as well as prepayments made on orders.

The “others” item includes various individual items. Key components are the change in payroll liabilities at €–19 million (previous year: €–117 million) and adjustments of unrealised exchange rate effects of €58 million (previous year: €–58 million). This resulted in an improvement in cash flow from operating activities of €214 million. The decline in payroll payments is essentially due to a decline in performance-based one-time payments. In addition, payments of €46 million (previous year: €39 million) were made to METRO Unterstützungskasse e. V. In addition, real estate assets in the amount of €15 million (previous year: €41 million) were acquired for resale.

During the financial year 2012, the Group recorded cash outflows of €626 million (previous year: €1,072 million) from investing activities of continuing operations. This includes inflows for the divestment of OPCI FRENCH WHOLESALE PROPERTIES – FWP in the amount of €203 million as well as €14 million for the divestment of MAKRO Cash & Carry in the United Kingdom. In the previous year, cash flow from investing activities included an outflow of €106 million for the acquisition of the Redcoon group. The amount of investments in fixed assets shown as cash outflows differs from the inflows shown in the asset statement in the amount of non-cash transactions. These essentially concern additions from finance leases, currency effects and changes in liabilities from the acquisition of miscellaneous other assets. Other investments include investments in intangible assets totalling €136 million (previous year: €155 million) as well as investments in financial assets totalling €7 million (previous year: €17 million).

In the financial year 2012, financing activities of continuing operations generated cash inflows of €279 million (previous year: cash outflows of €2,441 million). The improvement in cash flow from financing activities is essentially due to the issuance of bonds with a volume of €1,698 million.