Annual report pursuant to Section 13 and 15(d)

Summary of significant accounting policies (Policies)

v3.7.0.1
Summary of significant accounting policies (Policies)
12 Months Ended
Dec. 31, 2016
Summary of significant accounting policies [Abstract]  
Basis of Accounting, Policy [Policy Text Block]
Basis of presentation
 
The consolidated financial statements have been prepared in accordance with the United States generally accepted accounting principles ("U.S. GAAP").
Consolidation, Policy [Policy Text Block]
Consolidation
 
The consolidated financial statements include the accounts of Highpower and its direct and indirect wholly and majority owned subsidiaries. All significant inter-company balances and transactions have been eliminated in consolidation. Non-controlling interests represent the equity interest in the GZ Highpower that is not owned by the Company.
Reclassification, Policy [Policy Text Block]
Reclassification
 
The Company has reclassified certain comparative balances in the consolidated balance sheet for December 31, 2015 to conform to the current period’s presentation. The reclassification is related to the aggregation of the balance of prepayments and the balance of other receivables into the balance of prepayments and other receivables. The reclassification did not have an impact on the reported total assets, liabilities and stockholders’ equity.
Use of Estimates, Policy [Policy Text Block]
Use of estimates
 
The preparation of financial statements in conformity with U.S. GAAP requires the Company to make estimates and assumptions that affect the reported amounts of assets, liabilities, revenues and expenses, and related disclosure of contingent assets and liabilities at the date of the financial statements and the reported amounts of revenues and expenses during the reporting periods. Significant items subject to such estimates and assumptions include the allowance for doubtful receivables; recoverability of the carrying amount of inventory; fair value of financial instruments; and the assessment of deferred tax assets or liabilities. These estimates are often based on complex judgments and assumptions that management believes to be reasonable but are inherently uncertain and unpredictable. Actual results could differ from these estimates.
Concentration Risk, Credit Risk, Policy [Policy Text Block]
Concentrations of credit risk
 
Financial instruments that potentially subject the Company to significant concentrations of credit risk consist principally of accounts receivable. The Company extends credit based on an evaluation of the customer’s financial condition, generally without requiring collateral or other security. In order to minimize the credit risk, the management of the Company has delegated a team responsible for determining credit limits, credit approvals and other monitoring procedures to ensure that follow-up action is taken to recover overdue debts. Further, the Company reviews the recoverable amount of each individual trade debt at each balance sheet date to ensure that adequate impairment losses are made for irrecoverable amounts. In this regard, the management of the Company considers that the Company’s credit risk is significantly reduced.
 
No customer accounted for 10% or more of net sales during the years ended December 31, 2016 and 2015.
 
No supplier accounted for or over 10% of our total purchase amount during the years ended December 31, 2016 and 2015.
 
As of December 31, 2016, there was no customer accounted for 10% or more of the accounts receivable. There was one major customer accounted for 11.3% of the accounts receivable as of December 31, 2015.
Cash and Cash Equivalents, Policy [Policy Text Block]
Cash
 
Cash include all cash on hand and cash in bank with no restrictions.
Cash and Cash Equivalents, Restricted Cash and Cash Equivalents, Policy [Policy Text Block]
Restricted cash
 
Restricted cash include time deposits, cash security for bank acceptance bills, and government grant.
Receivables, Policy [Policy Text Block]
Accounts receivable
 
Accounts receivable are stated at the original amount less an allowance for doubtful receivables, if any, based on a review of all outstanding amounts at period end. An allowance is also made when there is objective evidence that the Company will not be able to collect all amounts due according to the original terms of the receivables. The Company analyzes the aging of the customer accounts, customer concentrations, customer credit-worthiness, current economic trends and changes in its customer payment patterns when evaluating the adequacy of the allowance for doubtful accounts.
Finance, Loans and Leases Receivable, Policy [Policy Text Block]
Notes receivable
 
Notes receivable represent banks’ and commercial acceptances that have been arranged with third-party financial institutions by certain customers to settle their purchases from us. These banks’ acceptances are non-interest bearing and are collectible within six months.
Inventory, Policy [Policy Text Block]
Inventories
 
Inventories are stated at lower of cost or market. Cost is determined using the weighted average method. Inventories include raw materials, packing materials, consumables, work in progress and finished goods. The variable production overhead is allocated to each unit of production on the basis of the actual use of the production facilities. The allocation of fixed production overhead to the costs of conversion is based on the normal capacity of the production facilities.
 
Where there is evidence that the utility of inventories, in their disposal in the ordinary course of business, will be less than cost, whether due to physical deterioration, obsolescence, changes in price levels, or other causes, the inventories are written down to fair value.
Property, Plant and Equipment, Policy [Policy Text Block]
Property, plant and equipment
 
Property, plant and equipment are stated at cost less accumulated depreciation. Cost represents the purchase price of the asset and other costs incurred to bring the asset into its existing use. Maintenance, repairs and betterments, including replacement of minor items, are charged to expense; major additions to physical properties are capitalized.
 
Depreciation of property, plant and equipment is provided using the straight-line method over their estimated useful lives:
 
Buildings
20-40 years
Furniture, fixtures and office equipment
5 years
Leasehold improvement
 Shorter of the remaining lease terms or estimated useful lives
Machinery and equipment
10 years
Motor vehicles
5 years
 
Upon sale or disposal, the applicable amounts of asset cost and accumulated depreciation are removed from the accounts and the net amount less proceeds from disposal is charged or credited to income.
 
Construction in progress represents capital expenditures for direct costs of construction or acquisition and design fees incurred, and the interest expenses directly related to the construction. Capitalization of these costs ceases and the construction in progress is transferred to the appropriate category of property, plant and equipment when substantially all the activities necessary to prepare the assets for their intended use are completed. Construction in progress is not depreciated.
Investment, Policy [Policy Text Block]
Long-term investment
 
For an investee company over which the Company holds less than 20% voting interest, the investments are accounted for under the cost method.
 
For an investee company over which the Company has the ability to exercise significant influence, but does not have a controlling interest, the Company accounted for those using the equity method. Significant influence is generally considered to exist when the Company has an ownership interest in the voting stock of the investee between 20% and 50%. Other factors, such as representation on the investee’s board of directors, voting rights and the impact of commercial arrangements, are also considered in determining whether the equity method of accounting is appropriate.
 
An impairment charge is recorded if the carrying amount of the investment exceeds its fair value and this condition is determined to be other-than temporary. As of December 31, 2016, management believes no impairment charge is necessary.
Land Use Rights [Policy Text Block]
Land use rights
 
Land use rights represent payments for the rights to use certain parcels of land for a certain period of time in the PRC. Land use rights are carried at cost and charged to expense on a straight-line basis over 50 years the rights are granted.
Asset Retirement Obligations, Policy [Policy Text Block]
Other assets
 
Other assets represent a royalty-bearing, non-exclusive license to use certain patents owned by an unrelated party ("License Provider"), to manufacture rechargeable nickel metal hydride batteries for portable consumer applications (“Consumer Batteries”) in the PRC, and a royalty-bearing, non-exclusive worldwide license to use certain patents owned by License Provider to manufacture, sell and distribute Consumer Batteries.
Revenue Recognition, Deferred Revenue [Policy Text Block]
Government grants
 
Conditional government grants are recognized as deferred income when received. Specifically, government grants whose primary condition is that the Company should purchase, construct or otherwise acquire non-current assets is recognized on the consolidated balance sheet as deferred income and deducted in calculating the carrying amount of the related asset. The revenue from such grants is recognized in profit or loss over the life of the related depreciable asset as a reduction of depreciation expense. As of December 31, 2016 and 2015, the Company recorded deferred income of $761,491 and $879,944, respectively, for the government grants to purchase non-current assets.
 
Government grants as compensation for expenses or losses already incurred or for the purpose of giving immediate financial support to the Company with no future related benefit are recognized as other income in the period in which they become receivable. Approximately $1,762,266 and $563,485 government grant were recognized as other income for the years ended December 31, 2016 and 2015, respectively.
Impairment or Disposal of Long-Lived Assets, Policy [Policy Text Block]
Impairment of long-lived assets
 
The Company reviews its long-lived assets for impairment whenever events or changes in circumstances indicate that the carrying amount of an asset may no longer be recoverable. When these events occur, the Company measures impairment by comparing the carrying value of the long-lived assets to the estimated undiscounted future cash flows expected to result from the use of the assets and their eventual disposition. If the sum of the expected undiscounted cash flow is less than the carrying amount of the assets, the Company would recognize an impairment loss, which is the excess of carrying amount over the fair value of the assets, using the expected future discounted cash flows.
Revenue Recognition, Policy [Policy Text Block]
Revenue recognition
 
The Company recognizes revenue when persuasive evidence of an arrangement exists, the sales price is fixed or determinable, delivery of the product has occurred, title and risk of loss have transferred to the customers and collectability of the receivable is reasonably assured. The majority of domestic sales contracts transfer title and risk of loss to customers upon receipt of product by customer. The majority of oversea sales contracts transfer title and risk of loss to customers when goods were delivered to the carriers. Revenue is presented net of sales tax and value added tax.
 
The Company does not have arrangements for returns from customers and does not have any future obligations directly or indirectly related to product resale by customers. The Company has no sales incentive programs.
Cost of Sales, Policy [Policy Text Block]
Cost of Sales
 
Cost of sales consists primarily of material costs, labor costs, depreciation and related expenses, which are directly attributable to the production of products. Write-down of inventories to lower of cost or market is also recorded in cost of sales.
Research and Development Expense, Policy [Policy Text Block]
Research and development
 
Research and development expenses include expenses directly attributable to the conduct of research and development programs, including the expenses of salaries, employee benefits, materials, supplies, and maintenance of research equipment. All expenses associated with research and development are expensed as incurred.
Share-based Compensation, Option and Incentive Plans Policy [Policy Text Block]
Share-Based Compensation
 
The Company recognizes compensation expense associated with the issuance of equity instruments to employees for their services. The fair value of the equity instruments is estimated on the date of grant and is expensed in the financial statements over the vesting period. The input assumptions used in determining fair value are the expected life, expected volatility, risk-free rate and the dividend yield.
 
Share-based compensation associated with the issuance of equity instruments to non-employees is recorded at the fair value on the measurement date. The measurement of stock-based compensation at fair value is subject to periodic adjustment at each reporting period.
Income Tax, Policy [Policy Text Block]
Income taxes
 
The Company recognizes deferred tax assets and liabilities for the expected future tax consequences of events that have been included in the financial statements or tax returns. Under this method, deferred income taxes are recognized for the tax consequences in future years of differences between the tax bases of assets and liabilities and their financial reporting amounts at each period end based on enacted tax laws and statutory tax rates, applicable to the periods in which the differences are expected to affect taxable income. Valuation allowances are established, when necessary, to reduce deferred tax assets to the amount expected to be realized.
Income Tax Uncertainties, Policy [Policy Text Block]
Uncertain tax positions
 
The Company accounts for uncertainty in income taxes using a two-step approach to recognizing and measuring uncertain tax positions. The first step is to evaluate the tax position for recognition by determining if the weight of available evidence indicates that it is more likely than not that the position will be sustained on audit, including resolution of related appeals or litigation processes, if any. The second step is to measure the tax benefit as the largest amount that is more than 50% likely of being realized upon settlement. Interest and penalties related to uncertain tax positions are recognized and recorded as necessary in the provision for income taxes. According to the PRC Tax Administration and Collection Law, the statute of limitations is three years, five years, ten years and twenty years, if the underpayment of taxes is due to computational errors made by the taxpayer or the withholding agent, errors relating to transferring pricing issues and tax evasion, respectively. There were no uncertain tax positions as of December 31, 2016 and 2015 and the Company does not believe that its unrecognized tax benefits will change over the next twelve months.
Comprehensive Income, Policy [Policy Text Block]
Comprehensive income
 
Comprehensive income is comprised of the Company’s net income and other comprehensive income. The component of other comprehensive income or loss is consisted solely of foreign currency translation adjustments, net of the income tax effect.
Foreign Currency Transactions and Translations Policy [Policy Text Block]
Foreign currency translation and transactions
 
Highpower’s functional currency is the United States dollar ("US$"). HKHTC's functional currency is the Hong Kong dollar ("HK$"). The functional currency of Highpower's other direct and indirect wholly and majority owned subsidiaries in the PRC is the Renminbi ("RMB").
 
Most of the Company’s oversea sales are priced and settled with US$. At the date a foreign currency transaction is recognized, each asset, liability, revenue, expense, gain, or loss arising from the transaction is measured initially in the functional currency of the recording entity by use of the exchange rate in effect at that date. The increase or decrease in expected functional currency cash flows upon settlement of a transaction resulting from a change in exchange rates between the functional currency and the currency in which the transaction is denominated is recognized as foreign currency transaction gain or loss that is included in earnings for the period in which the exchange rate changes. At each balance sheet date, recorded balances that are denominated in a foreign currency are adjusted to reflect the current exchange rate.
 
The Company’s reporting currency is US$. Assets and liabilities of HKHTC and the PRC subsidiaries are translated at the current exchange rate at the balance sheet dates, revenues and expenses are translated at the average exchange rates during the reporting periods, and equity accounts are translated at historical rates. Translation adjustments are reported in other comprehensive income.
Segment Reporting, Policy [Policy Text Block]
Segment Reporting
 
The Company uses the “management approach” in determining reportable operating segments. The management approach considers the internal organization and reporting used by the Company's chief operating decision maker for making operating decisions and assessing performance as the source for determining the Company's reportable segments. The Company’s reportable segments are based on products, geography, legal structure, management structure, or any other manner in which management disaggregates a company. Therefore the Company categorizes its business into three reportable segments, namely (i) Lithium Batteries; (ii) Ni-MH Batteries; and (iii) New Material.
Fair Value of Financial Instruments, Policy [Policy Text Block]
Fair value of financial instruments
 
The carrying values of the Company’s financial instruments, including cash, restricted cash, trade and other receivables, deposits, trade and other payables and bank borrowings, approximate their fair value due to the short-term maturity of such instruments.
 
ASC Topic 820 defines fair value as the price that would be received from selling an asset or paid to transfer a liability in an orderly transaction between market participants at the measurement date. When determining the fair value measurements for assets and liabilities required or permitted to be recorded at fair value, the Company considers the principal or most advantageous market in which it would transact and it considers assumptions that market participants would use when pricing the asset or liability.
 
ASC Topic 820 establishes a fair value hierarchy that requires maximizing the use of observable inputs and minimizing the use of unobservable inputs when measuring fair value. A financial instrument’s categorization within the fair value hierarchy is based upon the lowest level of input that is significant to the fair value measurement.
   
The Company measures fair value using three levels of inputs that may be used to measure fair value:
 
-Level 1 applies to assets or liabilities for which there are quoted prices in active markets for identical assets or liabilities.
 
-Level 2 applies to assets or liabilities for which there are inputs other than quoted prices included within Level 1 that are observable for the asset or liability such as quoted prices for similar assets or liabilities in active markets; quoted prices for identical assets or liabilities in markets with insufficient volume or infrequent transactions (less active markets); or model-derived valuations in which significant inputs are observable or can be derived principally from, or corroborated by, observable market data.
 
-Level 3 applies to assets or liabilities for which there are unobservable inputs to the valuation methodology that are significant to the measurement of the fair value of the assets or liabilities.
Warrant Liabilities Policy [Policy Text Block]
Warrant Liability
 
For warrants that are not indexed to the Company’s stock, the Company records the fair value of the issued warrants as a liability at each balance sheet date and records changes in the estimated fair value as a non-cash gain or loss in the consolidated statement of operations and comprehensive income. The warrant liability is recognized in the balance sheet at the fair value (level 3). The fair value of these warrants have been determined using the Black-Scholes pricing mode. The Black-Scholes pricing model provides for assumptions regarding volatility, call and put features and risk-free interest rates within the total period to maturity. The Company revalued the warrants utilizing a binomial model as of December 31, 2016 and 2015, respectively, with no material difference in the value.
Earnings Per Share, Policy [Policy Text Block]
Earnings per share
 
Basic earnings per share (“EPS”) is computed by dividing income attributable to holders of common shares by the weighted average number of common shares outstanding during the year. Diluted EPS reflects the potential dilution that could occur if securities or other contracts to issue common shares were exercised or converted into common shares.
New Accounting Pronouncements, Policy [Policy Text Block]
Recently issued accounting pronouncements
 
In May 2014, the FASB issued Accounting Standards Update 2014-09, Revenue from Contracts with Customers, or ASU 2014-09. This new standard will replace all current U.S. GAAP guidance on this topic and eliminate all industry-specific guidance. The new revenue recognition standard provides a unified model to determine when and how revenue is recognized. The core principle is that a company should recognize revenue to correlate with the transfer of promised goods or services to customers in an amount that reflects the consideration for which the entity expects to be entitled in exchange for those goods or services. In July 2015, the FASB voted to defer the effective date of ASU 2014-09 by one year, while allowing a company to adopt the new revenue standard early but not before the original effective date. This guidance will be effective as to the Company on January 1, 2018 and can be applied either retrospectively to each period presented or as a cumulative-effect adjustment as of the date of adoption. In April and May 2016, the FASB issued Accounting Standards Update 2016-10, Revenue from Contracts with Customers, or ASU 2016-10, and Accounting Standards Update 2016-12, Revenue from Contracts with Customers, or ASU 2016-12, respectively. These new standards will identify performance obligations and narrow aspects on achieving core principle. The Company is currently evaluating the impact of adopting these ASUs on its consolidated financial statements.
 
During 2016, the Company have made significant progress toward its evaluation of the potential changes from adopting the new standard on its future financial reporting and disclosures. The Company has established a cross-functional implementation team on assessment on the five-step model of the new standard to its revenue contracts. The adoption of this guidance is not expected to have a material effect on our result of operations, financial position or liquidity. The management has not yet selected a transition method. The Company anticipates adopting this new guidance on January 1, 2018, and plans on giving additional updates on its progress and further conclusions on its Form-10Q’s during the first and second quarters of 2017.
 
In July 2015, the FASB issued Accounting Standards Update (ASU) 2015-11, Simplifying the Measurement of Inventory. Under this ASU, inventory will be measured at the “lower of cost and net realizable value” and options that currently exist for “market value” will be eliminated. The ASU defines net realizable value as the “estimated selling prices in the ordinary course of business, less reasonably predictable costs of completion, disposal, and transportation.” No other changes were made to the current guidance on inventory measurement. ASU 2015-11 is effective for interim and annual periods beginning after December 15, 2016. Early application is permitted and should be applied prospectively. The Company does not expect the adoption of this guidance to have a material impact on its consolidated financial statements.
 
In November 2015, the FASB issued Accounting Standards Update (ASU) No. 2015-17, Income Taxes (Topic 740). To simplify the presentation of deferred income taxes, the amendments in this Update require that deferred tax liabilities and assets be classified as noncurrent in a classified statement of financial position. The amendments in this Update apply to all entities that present a classified statement of financial position. The current requirement that deferred tax liabilities and assets of a tax-paying component of an entity be offset and presented as a single amount is not affected by the amendments in this Update. For public business entities, the amendments in this Update are effective for financial statements issued for annual periods beginning after December 15, 2016, and interim periods within those annual periods. Earlier application is permitted. The adoption of this guidance is not expected to have a material impact on the Company's consolidated financial condition, results of operations or cash flows.
 
On February 25, 2016, the FASB issued Accounting Standards Update (ASU) 2016-02, Leases (Topic 842). It requires that a lessee recognize the assets and liabilities that arise from operating leases. A lessee should recognize in the statement of financial position a liability to make lease payments (the lease liability) and a right-of-use asset representing its right to use the underlying asset for the lease term. For leases with a term of 12 months or less, a lessee is permitted to make an accounting policy election by class of underlying asset not to recognize lease assets and lease liabilities. In transition, lessees and lessors are required to recognize and measure leases at the beginning of the earliest period presented using a modified retrospective approach. Public business entities should apply the amendments in ASU 2016-02 for fiscal years beginning after December 15, 2018, including interim periods within those fiscal years (i.e., January 1, 2019, for a calendar year entity). Early application is permitted for all public business entities and all nonpublic business entities upon issuance. The Company is currently evaluating the impact of adopting ASU 2016-02 on its consolidated financial statements.
 
In March 2016, the FASB issued Accounting Standards Update (ASU) 2016-07, Investments-Equity Method and Joint Venture (Topic 323). The amendments require that the equity method investor add the cost of acquiring the additional interest in the investee to the current basis of the investor’s previously held interest and adopt the equity method of accounting as of the date the investment becomes qualified for equity method accounting. It is effective for all entities for the fiscal years, and interim periods within those fiscal years, beginning after December 15, 2016. Earlier application is permitted. The adoption of this guidance is not expected to have a material impact on the Company's consolidated financial condition, results of operations or cash flows.
   
In March 2016, the FASB issued Accounting Standards Update (ASU) 2016-09, Compensation—Stock Compensation (Topic 718). Under this update, share-based payment transactions simplified several aspects of the accounting, including the income tax consequences, classification of awards as either equity or liabilities, and classification on the statement of cash flows. Some of the areas for simplification apply only to nonpublic entities. For public business entities, the amendments in this Update are effective for annual periods beginning after December 15, 2016, and interim periods within those annual periods. Early adoption is permitted for any entity in any interim or annual period. The adoption of this guidance is not expected to have a material impact on the Company's consolidated financial condition, results of operations or cash flows.
 
In August 2016, the FASB issued Accounting Standards Update (ASU) 2016-15, Statement of Cash Flows (Topic 230). The amendments in this update provide guidance on eight specific cash flow issue. It applies to all entities. For public business entities, the amendments in this Update are effective for annual periods beginning after December 15, 2017, and interim periods within those annual periods. Early adoption is permitted for any entity in any interim or annual period. The Company is currently evaluating the impact of adopting ASU 2016-15 on its consolidated financial statements.
 
In October 2016, the FASB issued Accounting Standards Update (ASU) 2016-16, Income Taxes (Topic 740). The amendments in this Update is to improve the accounting for the income tax consequences of intra-entity transfers of assets other than inventory and align the recognition of income tax consequences for intra-entity transfers of assets other than inventory with International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS). Public business entities should apply the amendments in ASU 2016-16 for fiscal years beginning after December 15, 2017, including interim periods within those fiscal years. Early adoption is permitted for any entity in any interim or annual period. The Company is currently evaluating the impact of adopting ASU 2016-16 on its consolidated financial statements.
 
In November 2016, the FASB issued Accounting Standards Update (ASU) 2016-18, Statement of Cash Flows (Topic 230). The amendments in this Update require that a statement of cash flows explain the change during the period in the total of cash, cash equivalents, and amounts generally described as restricted cash or restricted cash equivalents. The amendments in this Update are effective for public business entities for fiscal years beginning after December 15, 2017, and interim periods within those fiscal years. For all other entities, the amendments are effective for fiscal years beginning after December 15, 2018, and interim periods within fiscal years beginning after December 15, 2019. Early adoption is permitted, including adoption in an interim period. If an entity early adopts the amendments in an interim period, any adjustments should be reflected as of the beginning of the fiscal year that includes that interim period. The Company is currently evaluating the impact of adopting ASU 2016-18 on its consolidated financial statements
 
The Company does not believe other recently issued but not yet effective accounting standards, if currently adopted, would have a material effect on the consolidated financial position, statements of operations and cash flows.