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The Company assesses the likelihood of any adverse outcomes to contingencies, including legal matters, as well as probable losses. We record provisions for such contingencies when it is probable that a liability will be incurred and the amount of the loss can be reasonably estimated. A contingent liability is disclosed where the existence of the obligation will only be confirmed by future events, or where the amount of the obligation cannot be measured with reasonable reliability. Provisions are re-measured at each balance sheet date based on the best estimate of the settlement amount.
In relation to legal matters, we develop estimates in consultation with internal and external legal counsel taking into account the relevant facts and circumstances known to us. The factors that we consider in developing our legal provisions include the merits and jurisdiction of the litigation, the nature and number of other similar current and past litigation cases, the nature of the subject matter of the litigation, the likelihood of settlement and current state of settlement discussions, if any.
Operating segments are reported in a manner consistent with the internal organisational and management structure and the internal reporting information provided to the chief operating decision maker, who is responsible for allocating resources and assessing performance of operating segments. The Company is managed as a single business unit that provides low fares airline-related services, including scheduled services, and ancillary services including car hire services, and internet and other related services to third parties, across a European route network.
Income statement classification and presentation
Individual income statement captions have been presented on the face of the income statement, together with additional line items, headings and sub-totals, where it is determined that such presentation is relevant to an understanding of our financial performance, in accordance with IAS 1, ―Presentation of Financial Statements‖.
Expenses are classified and presented in accordance with the nature-of-expenses method. We disclose separately on the face of the income statement, within other income and expense, losses on the impairment of available-for-sale financial assets and gains or losses on disposal of property, plant and equipment. The nature of the Company‘s available-for-sale asset is that of a financial investment; accordingly any impairment of the investment is categorised as finance expense and included in other income/(expense) as a separate line item. The presentation of gains or losses on the disposal of property, plant and equipment within other income/(expense) accords with industry practice.
Scheduled revenues comprise the invoiced value of airline and other services, net of government taxes.
Revenue from the sale of flight seats is recognised in the period in which the service is provided. Unearned revenue represents flight seats sold but not yet flown and a provision for government tax refund claims attributable to unused tickets, and is included in accrued expenses and other liabilities. Revenue, net of government taxes, is released to the income statement as passengers fly. Unused tickets are recognised as revenue on a systematic basis, such that twelve months of time expired revenues are recognised in revenue in each fiscal year. Miscellaneous fees charged for any changes to flight tickets are recognised in revenue immediately.
During the year ended March 31, 2012, changes in estimates relating to the timing of revenue recognition for unused passenger tickets were made, resulting in increased revenue of €65.3 million (fiscal year 2014:Nil, 2013:Nil). This change reflects more accurate and timely data obtained through system enhancements.
Ancillary revenues are recognised in the income statement in the period the ancillary services are provided.
Share-based payments The Company engages in equity-settled, share-based payment transactions in respect of services received from certain of its employees. The fair value of the services received is measured by reference to the fair value of the share options on the date of the grant. The grant measurement date is the date that a shared understanding of the terms of the award is established between the Company and the employee. The cost of the employee services received in respect of the share options granted is recognised in the income statement over the period that the services are received, which is the vesting period, with a corresponding increase in equity. To the extent that service is provided prior to the grant measurement date, the fair value of the share options is initially estimated and re-measured at each balance sheet date until the grant measurement date is achieved. The fair value of the options granted is determined using a binomial lattice option-pricing model, which takes into account the exercise price of the option, the current share price, the risk-free interest rate, the expected volatility of the Ryanair Holdings plc share price over the life of the option and other relevant factors. Non-market vesting conditions are taken into account by adjusting the number of shares or share options included in the measurement of the cost of employee services so that ultimately, the amount recognised in the income statement reflects the number of vested shares or share options.
Pensions and other post-retirement obligations The Company provides certain employees with post-retirement benefits in the form of pensions. The Company currently operates a number of defined contribution schemes and a small defined benefit pension scheme in the U.K.
Costs arising in respect of the Company‘s defined contribution pension schemes (where fixed contributions are paid into the scheme and there is no legal or constructive obligation to pay further amounts) are charged to the income statement in the period in which they are incurred. Any contributions unpaid at the balance sheet date are included as a liability.
A defined benefit plan is a post-employment benefit plan other than a defined-contribution plan. The liabilities and costs associated with the Company‘s defined benefit pension scheme are assessed on the basis of the projected unit credit method by professionally qualified actuaries and are arrived at using actuarial assumptions based on market expectations at the balance sheet date. The net obligation in respect of defined benefit schemes is calculated separately for each plan by estimating the amount of future benefits that employees have earned in return for their service in the current and prior periods. That benefit is discounted to determine its present value and the fair value of any plan asset is deducted. The discount rates employed in determining the present value of each scheme‘s liabilities are determined by reference to market yields at the balance sheet date of high quality corporate bonds in the same currency and term that is consistent with those of the associated pension obligations. The net surplus or deficit arising on the Company‘s defined-benefit scheme is shown within non-current assets or liabilities on the balance sheet. The deferred tax impact of any such amount is disclosed separately within deferred tax.
Re-measurements, comprising actuarial gains and losses and the return on plan assets (excluding net interest), are recognised immediately in the balance sheet with a corresponding debit or credit to retained earnings through other comprehensive income in the period in which they occur.
Income tax on the profit or loss for a year comprises current and deferred tax. Income tax is recognised in the income statement except to the extent that it relates to items recognised in other comprehensive income (such as certain hedging derivative financial instruments, available-for-sale assets, pensions and other postretirement obligations). Current tax payable on taxable profits is recognised as an expense in the period in which the profits arise using tax rates enacted or substantively enacted at the balance sheet date.
Deferred income tax is provided in full, using the balance sheet liability method, on temporary differences arising from the tax bases of assets and liabilities and their carrying amounts in the consolidated financial statements. Deferred income tax is determined using tax rates and legislation enacted or substantively enacted by the balance sheet date and expected to apply when the temporary differences reverse.
The following temporary differences are not provided for: (i) the initial recognition of assets and liabilities that effect neither accounting nor taxable profit and (ii) differences relating to investments in subsidiaries to the extent that it is probable they will not reverse in the future.
A deferred tax asset is recognised to the extent that it is probable that future taxable profits will be available against which temporary differences can be utilised. The carrying amounts of deferred tax assets are reviewed at each balance sheet date and reduced to the extent that it is no longer probable that a sufficient taxable profit will be available to allow all or part of the deferred tax asset to be realised.
Social insurance, passenger taxes and sales taxes are recorded as a liability based on laws enacted in the jurisdictions to which they relate. Liabilities are recorded when an obligation has been incurred.
Tax liabilities are based on the best estimate of the likely obligation at each reporting period. These estimates are subject to revision based on the outcome of tax audits and discussions with revenue authorities that can take several years to conclude.
Share capital Ordinary shares are classified as equity. Incremental costs directly attributable to the issuance of ordinary shares and share options are recognised as a deduction from equity, net of any tax effects. When share capital recognised as equity is repurchased, the amount of consideration paid, which includes any directly attributable costs, net of any tax effects, is recognised as a deduction from equity. Repurchased shares are classified as treasury shares and are presented as a deduction from total equity, until they are cancelled.
Prospective accounting changes, new standards and interpretations not yet adopted The following new or revised IFRS standards and IFRIC interpretations will be adopted from their effective dates for the purposes of the preparation of future financial statements, where applicable. We do not anticipate that the adoption of these new or revised standards and interpretations will have a material impact on our financial position or results from operations.
IAS 32 (amendment), “Financial instruments: Presentation-offsetting financial assets and financial liabilities” (effective for fiscal periods beginning on or after January 1, 2014).* IAS 39 (amendment), ―Novation of Derivatives and Continuation of Hedge Accounting‖ (effective for fiscal periods beginning on or after January 1, 2014).* IAS 19 (amendment), ―Defined Benefit Plans: Employee Contributions” (effective for fiscal periods beginning on or after July 1, 2014).
IFRIC 21, ―Levies‖ (effective for fiscal periods beginning on or after January 1, 2014).* IFRS 9, “Financial Instruments” (2009, as amended in 2011 and 2013) (effective date to be determined).
―Improvements to IFRSs‖. 2010-2012 Cycle (effective for fiscal periods beginning on or after July 1, 2014).
―Improvements to IFRSs‖. 2011-2013 Cycle (effective for fiscal periods beginning on or after July 1, 2014).
IFRS 14, “Regulators Deferral Accounts” (effective for fiscal periods beginning on or after January 1, 2016).
Amendments to IAS 16 and IAS 38: “Clarification of Acceptable Methods of Depreciation and Amortisation” (effective for fiscal periods beginning on or after January 1, 2016).
Amendments to IFRS 11: “Accounting for Acquisitions of Interests in Joint Operations” (effective for fiscal periods beginning on or after January 1, 2016).
Amendments to IAS 16 and IAS 41: ―Agriculture: Bearer Plants‖ (effective for fiscal periods beginning on or after January 1, 2016).
IAS 15, ―Revenue from Contracts with Customers” (effective for fiscal periods beginning on or after January 1, 2017).
* Adopted by the EU (IASB effective date in brackets).
At March 31, 2014, the cost and net book value of aircraft included advance payments on aircraft of €282.1 million (2013: Nil; 2012: €110.5 million). Such amounts, where present, are not depreciated. The cost and net book value also includes capitalised aircraft maintenance, aircraft simulators and the stock of rotable spare parts.
The net book value of assets held under finance leases at March 31, 2014, 2013 and 2012 was €559.0 million, €582.9 million, and €607.5 million respectively.
Landing slots were acquired with the acquisition of Buzz Stansted Limited in April 2003. As these landing slots have no expiry date and are expected to be used in perpetuity, they are considered to be of indefinite life and accordingly are not amortised. The Company also considers that there has been no impairment of the value of these rights to date. The recoverable amount of these rights has been determined on a value-in-use basis, using discounted cash-flow projections for a twenty-year period for each route that has an individual landing right. The calculation of value-in-use is most sensitive to the operating margin and discount rate assumptions. Operating margins are based on the existing margins generated from these routes and adjusted for any known trading conditions. The trading environment is subject to both regulatory and competitive pressures that can have a material effect on the operating performance of the business. Foreseeable events, however, are unlikely to result in a change of projections of a significant nature so as to result in the landing rights‘ carrying amounts exceeding their recoverable amounts. These projections have been discounted based on the estimated discount rate applicable to the asset of 5.3% for 2014, 7.0% for 2013, and 7.7% for 2012.
Investment in Aer Lingus
As at March 31, 2014 Ryanair‘s total percentage shareholding in Aer Lingus was 29.8% (2013: 29.8%;