UBPartner Case Studies

  Proven and tested XBRL Technology  

Reduce the risk of implementing a new technology by selecting a proven platform

While UBPartner's XBRL Toolkit has been implemented extensively across Europe and the underlying XBRL Processing Engine (XPE) technology is also the platform of choice for XBRL projects around the world, each customer or partner has a different story on how they have implemented XBRL within their organisation.

Below are highlights on how some of the 500+ organisations that have adopted UBPartner’s XBRL tools and services. If you need further information on a specific project, then please contact info@ubpartner.com.

The applications that UBPartner software can be used for can be divided into three key areas:

Governments and Regulators

Major European Financial Services Regulator creates high-availability XBRL collection platform

One of the earliest adopters of XBRL in Europe, this organisation has implemented four separate XBRL frameworks using XPE as the core of its validation service.

  • Some 1,100 banks submit regular COREP and FINREP reports
  • The banks also submit detailed financial reports based upon a locally defined taxonomy
  • The platform was used to help the EBA collect Key performance indicator data
  • The same platform is now being used to collect reports from insurance firms using EIOPA’s Solvency II taxonomy.
The organisation has been one of the major champions of XBRL formulas and initially adopted their use to generate internal business checks and has since been a strong advocate of their adoption for the latest EBA and EIOPA taxonomies.

XBRL Formulas to deliver High Quality Data Collection System for European Tax Office

XBRL was adopted to overhaul a very large and complex forms based system. The development of the local XBRL taxonomy showed how the process can be used to greatly improve the quality of the underlying data models. The tax office was able to identify outdated and duplicate data definitions, which had been impossible in the previous Forms system.

As part of the XBRL implementation, UBmatrix advised on an extensive process for documenting the business rules used to validate the data being submitted. The business rules were converted into XBRL formulas and fully tested against known test instance documents to confirm that they operated correctly.

The validation service also utilises a unique feature of XPE, to dynamically control the level of validation, and in particular which XBRL formulas are executed. The system manages validation in two phases to ensure it can accept tens of thousands of valid XBRL documents in real-time and then as a second phase check the reports using some 300 quality checks (XBRL formulas) in batch mode. Each quality check fires many 'assertions' so that each document has the equivalent of thousands of data quality tests on it. Managing this level of quality checks in another technology would have been very difficult.

XBRL Application Suite eases adoption for Scandinavian FSA

Adopting a new technology can pose a steep learning curve. To reduce the risk this Scandinavian Financial Services Authority (FSA) decided to deploy a pre-packaged application. The UBmatrix EAS is based upon the lessons and requirements learned from projects such as the FFIEC. It provided the FSA with a new portal based collection service with XBRL document processing at its core.

In addition by providing a proven set of XBRL reporting tools to its 300+ reporting banks, the FSA also ensured that the quality of the reports it received was high, as the banks could validate their own documents before submission.

Having gained important knowledge and experience about how XBRL works and how best to deploy it, the FSA is now implementing a second version of its XBRL platform to support COREP, FINREP and Solvency II and integrating this into government’s general gateway services.

Inline XBRL provides perfect platform for Tax Returns

Following the lead of the UK tax office (UK HMRC), this tax office decided to adopt the Inline XBRL format for its corporate tax returns. To process the returns, they required an effective XBRL validation service that could be extended to include XBRL formula processing.

UBmatrix XPE provided the perfect platform, stripping the XBRL data from the Inline documents and providing advanced validation services. It was deployed as part of a XBRL validation service that offered a stable and consistent interface to the other Tax Office applications, so that very little other code had to be modified.

By using XPE in this way and reusing many of the artifacts from earlier projects, the project was implemented in double quick time and at a much lower cost than other comparative projects.

MFSA takes the simple and low-cost approach to CRD4 reports

Small financial market regulators have also benefited from the simple, cost-effective solutions. They can avoid many of the costs of adopting XBRL by deploying pre-packaged applications, such as the UBPartner XBRL Reporting Toolkit (XT). The Maltese Financial Services Authority (MFSA) implemented XT in double quick time and were able to integrate it into existing simple processes.

  We implemented the tools and trained staff to use it in a one week time-frame. At the end of the training our staff were ready to talk to banks about how to use and complete the new Excel reporting templates and then for us to convert them  

The tools allowed the MFSA to ensure that the XBRL reports they provided to the European Supervisory Authorities, such as the EBA and ECB, are 100% compliant with the relevant taxonomies and the embedded business rules. By using XBRL, MFSA believes that it can improve the quality of the data collection system and the timeliness of making the data available to its analysts for review.

See more on this story here

Reporting Companies

Scandinavian Insurance Company steps up to Solvency II reporting

The Solvency II reporting framework introduced by EIOPA across Europe provides a much greater challenge to insurance firms, in terms of the volume and complexity of data to be provided and the requirement to check the quality of data against a set of business rules. The business rules are encapsulated in the XBRL taxonomy as a set of XBRL formulas. The only way to confirm that the document is valid is to validate the document through an XBRL Processing Engine

Solvency II Reporting

This Scandinavian insurance firm had already implemented a very sophisticated information system to collect the relevant Solvency data. They needed a set of tools that could be readily integrated into the architecture and would not require them to understand the underlying XBRL syntax.

The UBPartner XBRL Toolkit helped them to complete the last mile of reporting process. The pre-mapped templates removed the need to understand the XBRL syntax and the embedded XBRL Processing Engine provided a complete set of validation results.

Mazars and UBPartner help Nestle digest Solvency II

Nestle’s specialist insurance arm, Institution de Prévoyance Nestlé, found itself subject to the new Solvency II directive like many insurers across Europe. They asked Mazars, an international organisation, specialising in audit, accountancy, tax, legal and advisory services to help them with the business requirements and asked UBPartner to help them with XBRL tools and services.

  With the UBPartner tools and Mazars’ advice we have been able to walk confidently through the complete process. It has also enabled Nestle to ensure that the information provided to the regulator meets all the requirements and is of the highest data quality. This is how all technology should work  

Nestle, Mazars and UBPartner worked closely together combining their mutual skills to deliver 100% compliant Solvency II reports, on time and on budget. See more on this story here

Belgian Bank centralises its COREP and FINREP reporting for Europe

The National Bank of Belgium has required XBRL formatted reports for both COREP and FINREP from 2005. With a requirement to report in other countries, such as France and Luxembourg, this major Belgian Bank wanted to implement a centralised XBRL reporting system for the group.

The system is based upon a data warehouse that collects all the relevant data for both COREP and FINREP. The data is then ‘sliced’ into the specific report for a local reporting entity. The data is loaded into the local template, converted to XBRL and using XPE.

The system is often referred to as its 'XBRL factory' and has been continuously updated as the taxonomies change to meet the new regulatory frameworks.

French bank generates XBRL reports from SAP Finance system


This French Bank has to generate XBRL reports for some 200 subsidiaries. To make this a robust and secure process, they created the relevant data structures for each report in their SAP Finance system.

UBPartner and the SAP consulting team helped them to develop a custom system to load data directly from SAP Finance system into the XBRL reports and then validate them.

The process has been a significant success and has been copied by other SAP users.

Major UK PLC automates UK Tax Reports Generation

For many UK companies having to produce Inline XBRL reports to submit to the UK HMRC is a difficult process and prone to errors. The reason for this is that many firms look to tag the reports after the data has already been extracted from their finance systems and formatted into a Word or similar document. There is, therefore, no simple mechanism to check that the data has been accurately transcribed.

Inline XBRL templates can be created to make the production of UK HMRC
and Irish Revenue annual reports an automated production process.

In addition, the UK GAAP and IFRS taxonomies currently make no use of XBRL formulas or other XBRL mechanisms for checking the quality of the data.

One major UK PLC decided they could do better than this. They implemented an automated system that tagged the data via templates, so that they could simply generate the 300 or so XBRL reports they needed by loading the data into the relevant template.

In addition, with UBmatrix help they developed some simple XBRL formulas to check the data quality. The combination means that this company can show that XBRL can help automate the reporting process and help improve and assure the quality of the reports being filed.

OEMs and Developers

Effisoft - Combining Insurance and XBRL knowledge is the key to 100% success in Solvency II reporting

Effisoft is a leading provider of software solutions to the Insurance, Reinsurance and Risk Management industries.

  We selected UBPartner because of their intimate knowledge of XBRL and understanding of the requirements for Solvency II reporting to the French regulators. We have been very pleased to see how easy it was to integrate UBPartner’s XBRL tools within our Assuretat regulatory reporting suite, saving us lengthy and much costly development time.  

The first round of Solvency reporting was always going to be challenging, but our customers are pleased at how efficiently the process has worked. Effisoft has helped some 32 entities to file Solvency II submissions to the French ACPR and the number of resubmissions required to successfully file was very low compared to other firms. This is important, as several regulators have said that they will monitor the quality of submissions and number of attempts as an indicator of how well the insurance firms are managing their internal processes. Thanks to the successful collaboration with UBPartner’s dedicated staff, our customers passed the September exercise and were able to send their data in XBRL format”. See more on this story Here

ConVista and UBPartner partner to provide a fully compliant XBRL reporting system to Munich Re

ConVista’s SolVentos system provides support for the complete process of collecting and preparing the relevant insurance data for submission to the local regulator, while UBPartner’s XBRL Reporting Toolkit provides a simple to use interface for converting the data to XBRL format, processing it against the validation rules and preparing the final file for submission.
  We needed a simple solution for the new Solvency II reporting framework that our business users can understand and use. ConVista’s SolVentos system which incorporates UBPartner’s tools provides an Excel add-on integrated in the SAP BW reporting frontend, which we are familiar with” stated Jörg Westphal, With ConVista’s SolVentos system we have been able to prepare and submit our first XBRL reports.   Program Manager at Munich Re.

ConVista has produced a fully automated system that walked through the preparatory phase of Solvency II reporting. See more on this story Here

zeb.control delivers an integrated approach to generating Solvency II reports using UBPartner’s leading XBRL technology

zeb is Europe’s leading management consultancy in the financial services sector. zeb’s services include the development of ultra-modern IT solutions, IT strategy consulting and the provision of support to clients during software implementation projects.

  Speaking to European banks and insurance firms facing the new regulatory frameworks and XBRL requirements, you find that they not only want something that manages the complete process, but they also expect a solution that hides the complexity of XBRL  

  Our clients and partners are telling us that the next 18 months is a critical period for them in terms of implementing the Solvency II framework. The new XBRL reporting requirements will significantly extend the demands placed upon insurance firms, but there are few real XBRL experts available. We embarked upon an extensive phase of talking to the leading XBRL consultants and testing different XBRL technology platforms to ensure that zeb.control was ready to deliver the best performance in class and to be 100% compliant with the new taxonomies. At the end, we found with UBPartner and XPE the right product that fits all of our requirements.  

zeb.control is a complete insurance reporting system and can be integrated with existing IT systems without problems. See more on this story Here

Milliman - Best to start early for XBRL Solvency II reporting

The first Solvency II reporting in France has been a success for the 75 insurers who chose Milliman's Vega® software, which has the UBPartner’s XBRL reporting tools embedded within it to generate XBRL reports. The advice to firms who are preparing to adopt XBRL reporting over the next year is to follow their lead, select a supplier with in-depth reporting knowledge, proven software systems and don’t delay in getting started on the process.

  Milliman chose to work with UBPartner because they really understand how XBRL works and have a simple yet flexible range of tools that we can integrate into a range of solutions that can meet all of our customers’ needs. In particular, the UBPartner XBRL Toolkit removes the need to understand complex XBRL syntax by providing pre-mapped Excel templates. Our customers simply load the data into the template and run the XBRL Converter Tool to generate a 100% compliant XBRL document. A complete set of validation reports alert the user to any mistakes in the document. This feature proved to be very useful in the first round of French reporting, enabling insurers to efficiently finalize the first delivery required by supervisors.  

Solvency II requires a much greater depth of information to be provided than previous insurance regulatory reports and the use of XBRL places a much greater emphasis on the quality of the data. So planning ahead and testing early will ensure that you are prepared. It is also sensible, given that the new reporting framework will require some changes to existing workflows, that firms should be looking to see if XBRL can help them improve the automation of their reporting process and establish better quality checks at the same time. See more on this story here

Solvency II reporting: Not so scary for Actelior

Helping clients with their Solvency II reports and, in particular, the new XBRL format can initially look daunting, but by adopting UBPartner’s XBRL Reporting Toolkit, Actélior a leading French consultancy firm found that it could focus on understanding the regulations and the business issues rather than the technology. A year later the first reports to the French regulators have been produced seamlessly and they are looking to extend the service.

  Our experience shows that these firms do not want complicated systems, nor do they have the manpower to implement and manage the level of change required by new reporting standards, such as Solvency II. They need to focus on their strategy and risk management and do not want to have to learn technical standards like XBRL,” stated Pascal Muzelle, President of Actélior.  

  We quickly realized that the pre-mapped Excel templates based upon the QRTs provided by UBPartner, combined with our experience of regulatory reporting, removed the need for our insurance customers to understand the complex XBRL syntax. They could focus on collecting and, analyzing the data; then simply load it into the template and run the XBRL Converter Tool to have a 100% compliant XBRL document.”  

The software can be used directly from Excel, which allows for a quick implementation and it provides a clear summary of any identified errors with their location, so that users can see any issues highlighted in the templates with which they are familiar with. There was no need for expensive training or integrated systems and the XBRL Converter Tool could be directly plugged into our reporting tools, at a fraction of the cost of other French XBRL software providers. See More on this story Here

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