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Sustainability Strategy*

Leveraging science and technology

For us, sustainable entrepreneurship and profitable growth go hand in hand. Only by creating value for society can we remain competitive and achieve human progress through our innovations and high-quality products. Responsible action is an integral part of our company culture. This also includes respecting the interests of our employees, customers, investors, and society. Safety and ethics matter just as much to us as business success. We mitigate ethical, economic, environmental, and social risks as far as possible. From the early stages of development through to disposal, we keep an eye on the entire life cycle of a product. We apply strict sustainability standards to our procurement activities. During product manufacture, we strive to keep the environmental impact as low as possible, which is why safe production techniques, high environmental standards and strict quality management are of course so important to us. And with our sustainable products, we also help the companies that we supply to achieve their sustainability goals.

Sustainability is an essential element of our enterprise strategy. We have set ourselves three strategic sustainability goals: In 2030, we will achieve progress for more than one billion people through sustainable science and technology. By 2030, we will integrate sustainability into all our value chains. By 2040, we will be climate neutral and reduce our resource consumption. With these goals, we are helping to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In order to achieve our sustainability goals, we have defined seven focus areas: sustainable innovations and technologies for our customers, impact of our technologies and products on health and well-being, sustainability culture and values, sustainability and transparency in the supply chain, securing our social license to operate in all regions, climate change and emissions, and water and resource intensity.

Implementing the sustainability strategy

In 2022, we focused on creating the right conditions for achieving our sustainability goals. All three business sectors derived sustainability strategies from the overarching company strategy and started executing them.

On the basis of 14 key indicators, which we defined back in 2021, we record and assess our progress towards achieving our sustainability goals. In 2022, we implemented various digital working tools that we believe will allow us to gain greater transparency with regard to our achievements.

In the year under review, we specified that also when assessing potential acquisitions, we would always include sustainability aspects. This will be the case even more so in the future, also when it comes to capital allocation and investment decisions as well as research and development. To assess the potential impacts of our products throughout their entire life cycle, we use a scorecard developed in-house. We introduced this scorecard for all three of our business sectors in 2022. Moreover, we added a sustainability factor to tour Long-Term Incentive Plan (LTIP) in 2022. Details on how this sustainability factor is calculated can be found in the Compensation Report.

We are now in the process of transforming the company and are integrating sustainability into the innovation process and all parts of the value chain. It is our aim to decouple the growth of our businesses from negative environmental impacts.

More information on sustainability topics can be found in the non-financial statement, which is also part of the management report.

* The contents of this chapter or section are voluntary and therefore not audited. However, our auditor has read the text critically.

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