The Group’s overall risk situation is the sum of the individual risks of all risk categories for the divisions and the corporate functions and legal entities. In addition to the risk categories described above, unpredictable events are possible that can disturb production and business processes such as natural disasters or terrorist attacks. This could adversely affect consumer confidence and could cause production interruptions due to supplier problems and intensified safety measures at national borders. In this context, Daimler also considers the risks of additional earthquakes in Asia, the danger of weather damage and political instability in sales regions. In the case of natural disasters, emergency plans are developed to allow the resumption of business activities. In addition, further protective measures are taken and, if possible, insurance cover is obtained. Other smaller risks relate to project and process risks as well as the shortage or lack of resources. In order to avoid or minimize these risks, measures are defined for each individual case and must be implemented accordingly.
In addition to the risks described above, there are risks that affect the reputation of the Daimler Group as a whole. Public interest is focused on Daimler’s position with regard to issues such as ethics and sustainability. Furthermore, customers and capital markets are interested in how the Group reacts to the technological challenges of the future and how we succeed in offering up-to-date and technologically leading products in the markets. As one of the fundamental principles of entrepreneurial activity, Daimler places particular priority on adherence to applicable law and ethical standards. In addition, a secure approach to sensitive data is a precondition for doing business with customers and suppliers in a trusting and cooperative environment. The Group takes extensive measures so that risks that may arise in this context with an impact on our reputation are subject to well-regulated internal controls.
In order to obtain an overall picture, Corporate Risk Management collates the information described on risks from the individual organizational units. There are no discernible risks that either alone or in combination with other risks could jeopardize the continued existence of the Group. But since considerable economic and industry risks still exist, setbacks on the way to regularly achieving our growth and profitability targets cannot be completely ruled out. However, the business environment of the Daimler Group has tended to improve slightly compared with the previous year. Daimler is confident that due to the established risk management system at the Group, risks are recognized at an early stage and the current risk situation can be successfully managed as a result.
For a holistic picture of the entrepreneurial activity of the Daimler Group, it is necessary to consider not only the risk side but also the opportunity side. The aforementioned opportunities represent potential and also challenges for the Daimler Group. By effectively and flexibly focusing the production program on changing conditions, the divisions of the Daimler Group strive to secure or surpass their respective targets and plans. As far as can be influenced by the Daimler Group and if measures prove to be economical, the Group takes appropriate action to realize the potential of its opportunities.