German Investors’ Award for Responsible Business Practices goes to Volkswagen and Krones
Krones and Volkswagen have been named as the winners of the German Investors’ Award for Responsible Business Practices. It is the third time that the publishing house DuMont Verlag and Deutsche Asset & Wealth Management (DeAWM) have honoured companies that demonstrate responsibility vis-à-vis the environment, employees, society and other stakeholder groups with this prize.
DuMont Verlag is one of Germany’s largest newspaper publishing companies most steeped in tradition. Deutsche Asset & Wealth Management is one of the world’s leading asset managers, with assets in the amount of 934 billion Euros under management.
The award ceremony was held on 22 November 2013 on the occasion of the 27th benefit gala “A Night for Art and Culture” at the concert hall Alte Oper in Frankfurt. The event is the culmination and conclusion of the Euro Finance Week. In the first two years, the prize was awarded under the name “DuMont-DWS Prize for Responsible Business Practices”. The award winners were BMW (2011) as well as Henkel and KfW (2012).
Michael Schneider, Head of Environmental, Social & Governance at Deutsche Asset & Wealth Management, said: “In Krones and Volkswagen, we have selected well-deserving companies as award winners. For both corporate groups, responsible action is an essential part of business activities.“ The founders of the prize want to encourage companies from the perspective of critical investors and journalists to firmly establish responsible practices in their core business as well as to behave accordingly vis-à-vis all stakeholder groups and nature. For in the long term, companies are only successful if they take that responsibility seriously. The selection of the prize-worthy companies was conducted in a two-stage process. This year 175 companies were subjected to quantitative analysis.
Following a speech by Jürgen Fitschen, CO-CEO of Deutsche Bank, on responsibility in the business world, Michael Schneider presented the prize to Hans Dieter Pötsch, Chief Financial Officer of the Volkswagen Group. Among other things, VW is reportedly receiving the prize because of its extremely convincing environmental commitment. In the period from 2010 to 2018, the Wolfsburg based company reduced the entire environmental impact of the corporate group by one quarter. In addition, the group earned top marks in the Social category for its employee-friendly approach. The extremely low fluctuation rate and the high level of satisfaction of its employees are outstanding.
Robert von Heusinger, Deputy Chief Editor and Business Head of the DuMont editorial team, presented the special prize to Volker Kronseder, the CEO of Krones AG in Neutraubling, the world's largest manufacturer of bottling plants. “Krones sets global standards for the design of sustainable production equipment,” says von Heusinger. The group of companies stands for highly ethical corporate values which also have to be fulfilled by suppliers and also for great solicitude for the well-being of its staff. Thus, the number of notifiable occupational accidents at Krones is more than 50% lower than the industry average.
The basis for the analysis of the companies consisted of the “Key Performance Indicators for Extra-/Non-Financials” of DVFA/EFFAS and Sustainalytics core data. Prof. Dr. Alexander Bassen of the University of Hamburg provided accompanying scientific support for the survey. In addition, the prize winners had to fulfil the qualitative requirements of the Environmental, Social & Governance Panel, which ultimately decided on the prizes awarded. It examined the results of the quantitative analysis with regard to environmental, social and corporate governance factors. The members of the panel were Prof. Dr. Alexander Bassen, University of Hamburg, Ralf Frank, General Secretary of DVFA, Hendrik Garz, Managing Director of Sustainalytics, Robert von Heusinger, Deputy Chief Editor and Business Head of the DuMont editorial team, Christian Strenger, a member of the German Governmental Commission on Corporate Governance, Henning Gebhardt, Head of Equity EMEA, Deutsche Asset & Wealth Management, and Michael Schneider, Head of Environmental, Social & Governance at Deutsche Asset & Wealth Management.
“In Krones and Volkswagen, we have selected well-deserving companies as prize winners. For both corporate groups, responsible action is an essential part of their business activities.”