11/4/2011, Düsseldorf / Germany


Fourth “German Sustainability Conference” in Düsseldorf

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Henkel generates new momentum for sustainable development

Today sees the fourth conferral of the annual “German Sustainability Award”. As a recognized pioneer in the field of sustainability and winner of the first award for the most sustainable German brand, Henkel supports the event as a sponsoring partner. Kathrin Menges, Executive Vice President Human Resources at Henkel, held a keynote address at the conference, offering insights into the company’s new sustainability strategy. She appealed to all companies to approach sustainability as an opportunity and a driver of innovation, and to integrate it as a permanent feature of their organization.

A regular item on the “German Sustainability Conference” program, the “German Sustainability Award”, has been regularly conferred since 2008 in recognition of companies that combine business success with responsibility toward people and the environment in an exemplary manner. “We at Henkel have long been convinced that sustainability and business success are mutually dependent. And in order to drive forward sustainable development across a wide front, it is crucial that each and every employee understands the strategy,” insists Kathrin Menges. “Consequently, it is likewise essential to reduce the complexity of the issue so that all employees are able to integrate sustainability in their daily activities and consistently make the right decisions.”

One issue that is not only of major importance for Henkel but was also right at the top of the agenda of the “German Sustainability Conference” is sustainable consumption. Together with experts from industry, politics and research, Enric Holzbacher, Corporate Senior Vice President at Henkel’s Adhesives Technologies business sector and member of the Henkel Sustainability Council, discussed how sustainable products might move out of their niche markets and into the global mainstream. In times of a rapidly growing world population with aspirations for a high standard of living and hence increasing consumption, it is now more important than ever to decouple growth and quality of life from resource consumption and emissions generation.

Innovative and, at the same time, resource-conserving products do not represent a contradiction in Henkel’s eyes. In its new sustainability strategy, the company has adopted the objective of creating value for customers, consumers, its neighbors and also its own businesses while at the same time reducing its ecological footprint. Henkel had already met its 2012 sustainability targets back in 2010. It is also particularly important from Henkel’s viewpoint to align the entire value chain to sustainability. Only if all industries and involved consumers at large are moving in the same direction and doing all they can within their sphere of influence can consumption be rendered more sustainable across the board.

Henkel provides extensive information on sustainability and social responsibility, plus all the relevant rankings and ratings, on its website www.henkel/com/sustainability.


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