Social responsibility

The main elements of our social involvement. Because we consider business success to be inseparable from social responsibility, we are working worldwide for the future of our society in line with our values and local needs.

To promote social development, we spent more than €60 million on donations to nonprofit institutions and sponsorships of socially beneficial projects in 2013. Added to this are our foundations and corporate volunteering activities, as well as self-initiated projects.

C.45 Donations and sponsorings 2013

We concentrate on areas that promote our role as a “good neighbor” of the communities in which we operate worldwide. We also focus on projects that can benefit from our core areas of expertise as an automobile manufacturer as well as our specific know-how. In particular, that includes projects devoted to science, technology, the environment, education, traffic safety, the arts and culture. We also support charitable projects, community projects and projects for promoting social and political dialogue.

Transparency and control. The Board of Management’s committee for donations and sponsorship controls all of the company’s donations and sponsorship activities worldwide. The committee bases its decisions on the donation and sponsorship guidelines, which creates binding regulations for the relevant criteria, legal stipulations and ethical standards. We also create transparency with the help of our donation and sponsorship database, which records all of the Group’s donations and sponsorship activities worldwide. Regular communication measures help employees to abide by the guidelines worldwide and make them aware of the risks associated with donations and sponsorship activities.

Support for political parties. In 2013, we supported democratic parties solely in Germany, donating a total of €320,000 (2012: €435,000). Of this total, the CDU and SPD parties each received €100,000 (2012: €150,000), and the FDP, the CSU, and BÜNDNIS 90/DIE GRÜNEN each received €40,000 (2012: €45,000).

Funding through foundations. We support universities, research institutes and interdisciplinary science projects worldwide to promote sustained innovation and the international sharing of ideas. We have combined these activities in our foundations. The Daimler and Benz Foundation is endowed with €125 million. As a promoter of the knowledge society, the foundation helps to fund the scientific development of research ideas in the areas of environmental protection and technological safety. It also funds a special team of mobility experts who study the effects and socially relevant aspects of autonomous driving. (See daimler-benz-stiftung.de)

Within the framework of the Founders’ Association for German Science, the Daimler Foundation is, among other things, involved in selecting the winners of the German Future Prize for Technology and Innovation. As part of MINTernational, the foundation also supports young scientists at academic institutions and helps to make universities more international. (See stifterverband.org)

Science, technology and the environment. Daimler has been helping environmental organizations conduct various projects for several years now. For example, the Baden-Württemberg chapter of the Nature and Biodiversity Conservation Union of Germany (NABU) cooperated with Daimler to launch a marsh renaturation project in 2012. Almost all of the marshes in Baden-Württemberg have been drained and severely damaged in past centuries, but the partners aim to restore two of them. This project will benefit many threatened plant and animal species as well as the climate in general.

Education and traffic safety. Our MobileKids program has been successfully promoting safety and the future of mobility since 2001. This initiative teaches schoolchildren about traffic safety in a playful and engaging manner. The ideas and content of MobileKids are also taught in other countries including China, Turkey and Hungary. To date, the program has prepared more than one million children worldwide to behave safely in road traffic. (See mobilekids.net)

Improving access to education is one of the most long-lasting investments benefiting society and also our company. That is why we launched the Genius education initiative, which is geared toward children and teenagers and combines various educational projects focusing on future technologies, mobility and environmental issues. We use age-appropriate programs and free workshops to provide playful and practical instruction outside a school setting. In conformity with the formal curriculum, we have also developed instructional materials on science and technology subjects. In this context, we offer teacher conferences and training courses related to these materials. (See genius-community.com)

The arts and culture. Daimler supports the arts and culture as a key element of its business identity. These activities focus on the promotion of regional culture. Among other things, we support the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra and the Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Music Festival. In China, we have a strategic partnership with the National Center for the Performing Arts and support Art Beijing and the International Music Festival. In South Africa, we are a partner of the country’s “21 icons” project, which aims to use national role models such as Nelson Mandela to inspire young people to follow in their tracks. (See 21icons.com)

Charitable projects. In cooperation with the aid organization Wings of Help, two convoys consisting of several new Mercedes-Benz Actros semitrailer trucks transported relief supplies to Syrian refugees in Turkey. The trucks carried some 35,000 blankets, winter clothing for 120,000 people, baby food for 150,000 children, vaccinations, tents, wheelchairs, ambulances and mobile medical centers almost 4,000 kilometers overland to the area along the Turkish-Syrian border.

Following the devastating typhoon in November 2013, Daimler quickly provided €500,000 to the suffering population in the Philippines and called on its employees to donate as well. The donation to the German Red Cross was invested in water treatment facilities and in measures for preventing epidemics.

As part of our national sponsorship program, we donated money in 2013 also to charitable initiatives that focus on helping families and children in Germany. Among them is the brotZeit project, which combines programs for supporting active senior citizens with the care of socially disadvantaged children. Needy children are served a free, balanced breakfast, and senior citizen volunteers provide slow learners with individualized support. (See brotzeitfuerkinder.com)

Corporate volunteering. Daimler Financial Services now organizes Days of Caring in more than 20 countries. In 2013, over 2,300 employees took part in the worldwide program to jointly help charitable institutions for a whole day. The climax of these activities was the Week of Caring in the United States, where around 1,000 employees spent a whole week working on charitable projects at more than 30 different institutions.

We continued to expand our ProCent initiative during the year under review. In this initiative, Daimler employees voluntarily donate the cent amounts of their net salaries to socially beneficial projects. The company matches every cent donated and collects the money in a support fund. In line with the suggestions of its employees, Daimler uses this money to support environmental and social projects in Germany and other countries worldwide. In 2013, we provided 175 projects with more than €1 million in funding. More than €1.7 million has been donated to socially beneficial projects since the initiative was launched in 2012.

In the “Gift a Smile” Christmas campaign, Daimler employees in the Stuttgart area put together 7,700 present parcels of toys, school articles, sweets and clothes for children and teenagers from socially disadvantaged families. Daimler provided the Christmas boxes for this campaign. A FUSO truck collected the packages from various locations. The presents were then distributed by the nonprofit food bank “Die Tafeln.”

More information about the projects promoted by the Group and the activities related to our social commitment can be found in the Daimler Sustainability Report and on our website under “Sustainability.” (See daimler.com/sustainability)

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