Bosch annual report appeals best to target groups, gives best overall impression, and safeguards transparency
More than 90 assessment criteria
Private Public Award presented by high-caliber panel of judges on November 19
Frankfurt – In competition with the 250 most successful family- and foundation-owned companies, the annual report of Robert Bosch GmbH has won first prize in the “best annual report” category. Uta-Micaela Dürig, senior vice president of Corporate Communications, Brand Management, and Sustainability at Robert Bosch GmbH, commented: “The annual report is our business card, both internally and in our dealings with the outside world. The entire team can be proud of this award. We won't rest on our laurels, however, but will carry on in our tradition of continuously improving our annual report.”
Modern annual reports beyond the stock exchange The Public Private Award is given for the best examples of transparent communication by family- or foundation-owned companies. Of 250 annual reports, 50 were shortlisted – 40 of them family-owned and 10 foundation-owned. The companies' annual sales ranged from 0.8 to more than 50 billion euros.
Family-owned companies are the mainstay of the economy. Roughly 60 percent of all companies in the EU are family-owned. In Germany, this figure is far higher: more than 90 percent of all the country's companies are in family ownership. They generate more than 40 percent of the country's sales revenue and create just under 60 percent of all jobs. Interest in these companies is correspondingly high – whether from customers, associates and applicants, or the general public.
A sound assessment, thanks to more than 90 criteria To be the best, an annual report has to satisfy a number of strict criteria: Is the company's business situation reported in a transparent way? Is the report complete and logical? How well has the guiding idea been translated in the image part? Is there a logical graphic concept? Only the company that collects enough points in all categories will emerge as the winner. On the basis of a checklist containing more than 90 criteria, the annual reports are assessed in terms of content, language, structure, and design.
High-caliber panel of experts The Private Public Award was initiated by ergo Kommunikation and the accounting and tax advisory firm PKF Fasselt Schlage. They were supported by a high-caliber panel of judges:
Andreas Martin: partner and member of the management board, ergo Kommunikation, head of the Frankfurt and Munich offices
Dr. Martin Fasselt: partner, PKF Fasselt Schlage, Duisburg
Klaus Bietz: designer and art director
Dr. Lutz Raettig: chairman of the supervisory board, Morgan Stanley Bank AG
Prof. Dr. rer. pol. Katrin Stefan: professor, Kempten University of Applied Sciences
Thorsten Oltmanns: partner and global marketing director, Roland Berger Strategy Consultants GmbH
About the Private Public Award This is the fourth year the Public Private Award has been presented. Past winners have included B. Braun Melsungen AG, Franz Haniel & Cie. GmbH, Otto Group, Heraeus Holding GmbH, and Adolf Würth GmbH & Co. KG.
50 additional places on vocational training courses in Germany, 20 in Italy, and 15 each in Portugal and Spain
Bosch earmarks 7.5 million euros over four years
Bosch CEO Denner: “Joint task for politicians, businesses, and society.”
Stuttgart – Bosch is offering an additional 100 places on its technical vocational training schemes in Germany, Italy, Portugal, and Spain to young people from Southern Europe. The initiative, which will take effect from the 2014 training year, is a response to high rates of youth unemployment in Southern Europe. The 50 new training places in Germany will be filled by applicants from Spain, while an additional 50 young people outside Germany will follow the program at Bosch locations in Italy, Portugal, and Spain. The technology and services company has set aside some 7.5 million euros in funding for the initiative over the next four years. The decision on whether to continue the initiative in future years will depend on the success of the initial program and ongoing developments in Southern European job markets. Some six million young people are unemployed across Europe – and the jobless rate among young people in some Southern European countries currently stands at more than 50 percent.
Youth unemployment – shared responsibility “Combating youth unemployment in Europe is a joint task for politicians, businesses, and society. All of us share responsibility for this, including Bosch. We want to play our part,” says Dr. Volkmar Denner, Chairman of the Board of Management at Robert Bosch GmbH. Youth unemployment not only has a negative impact on the economy; it also undermines political structures. Experts have long highlighted the risk of young people turning their backs on basic democratic principles if they feel they have no prospects. Christoph Kübel, Member of the Board of Management and Director of Industrial Relations at Bosch, also emphasizes the importance of people getting their working life off to a good start: “These early stages really set the course of people’s subsequent careers. Good training gives young people the chance to determine their own path.”
Training in Germany with intercultural support The young people eligible for the scheme will be recruited by the Bosch regional companies. Since training capacities at Bosch locations outside Germany are limited, 50 young people from Spain will be trained at German locations. The successful applicants will also get an opportunity to take a language course in Spain as part of the preparations for starting their training in Germany at the end of summer 2014. This will be followed by a three month internship at Bosch in Germany. The young people will receive intercultural training and assistance throughout their stay in Germany thanks to a joint initiative between Bosch and the vocational training company BBQ, a subsidiary of the Education Institute of Baden-Württemberg Industry and Commerce (Bildungswerk der Baden-Württembergischen Wirtschaft e.V.).
Ultrashort laser pulses are new tool for mechanical engineering
30 million products at Bosch by end of 2013 - three-fold increase likely in the medium term
Ditzingen and Stuttgart – Publicly funded projects involving companies and universities are one of the best ways of preserving and increasing Germany's innovative strength. For Volkmar Denner, the Bosch CEO, and Peter Leibinger, the deputy chairman of the Trumpf board of management, there is no doubt that this is true. “This path can be a decisive one for German industry,” Denner said in Ditzingen, near Stuttgart, on Wednesday. He believes such alliances are a good way of translating the results of research into innovative products faster, and of securing their economic benefit for Germany.
As a positive example of such an alliance, associates from Bosch, Trumpf, and the University of Jena have been jointly nominated for the Federal President's Future Prize. The three partners have worked to develop ultrashort laser pulses, from basic research to application as a new tool in industrial mass production. These high-energy pulses can be used to drill extremely small holes in the hardest metals, or to cut sapphires and diamonds.
They are fired at the material up to 800,000 times a second, ablating microscopically small surfaces. This gives rise to holes or incisions. Trumpf currently supplies the most powerful industrial lasers in the field. Bosch has already used the technology in its own industrial series production. Many of the basic principles behind this process are the result of work done at the University of Jena. The parties presented the technology to journalists on Wednesday. The winner of the award will be announced in Berlin on December 4. Two other teams are in the running for the federal president's prestigious award.
Speaking to journalists, the Bosch laser expert Jens König said: “At Bosch, this technology is on the point of making its impact felt in huge production volumes.” By the end of 2013, it will have been used to manufacture 30 million products at Bosch alone, he pointed out. “A three-fold increase is likely in the medium term.” One such product that has been especially successful is a fuel-saving gasoline injection system that uses 20 percent less gasoline. But the laser pulses can also be used to cut extremely hard glass for smartphones or to shape medical products such as stents.
Denner and Leibinger unanimously agreed that many of the fundamental principles behind the laser were set down years ago in the “PRIMUS” and “PROMPTUS” projects, funded by the Federal Ministry of Research. They added that one of the conditions for such funding is that the projects involve people from different disciplines who cooperate across subject boundaries. They feel that this plays a decisive role in generating new ideas for innovative products. “Such innovative strength is crucially important for our country. Politicians, society, and companies should never forget that,” Denner said. “The joint nomination for the Future Prize is an especially good example of such collaboration.”
Topographical data to provide the driver with an extended “vision” of the road
A new sensors function to optimise vehicle safety and comfort
Bosch and PSA Peugeot Citroën, along with other partners, are cooperating on the OpEneR (Optimal Energy Consumption and Recovery) research programme, designed to improve the range of future hybrid and electric vehicles and optimise driver safety and comfort. Two new technologies developed for the OpEneR project will be available for all types of motors (gasoline, diesel, hybrid and electric).
Navigation data for an extended vision of the road and 15 percent energy savings OpEneR now includes navigation data for predictive driving adaptation. The driver's vision is considerably extended with a preview of the road, based on topographical data such as slopes, bend radii and infrastructure data, with indication of road signs and speed limits. This innovation means gains in efficiency, with energy savings of up to 15 percent. Thanks to the road preview feature, the engine management system performs a dynamic calculation of the energy required from the electric motors.
On-board video camera and radars to optimise vehicle safety and comfort Sensors to help with driving comfort and safety, such as video camera and radars, are used to detect objects, other cars and pedestrians, as well as to recognise road signs, and also help bring down consumption. For instance, on the basis of the journey to be covered, a computer determines the vehicle's future speed curve, by integrating data going beyond the next bend. The Adaptive Cruise Control function automatically regulates the vehicle's speed and brakes before entering the bend, built-up areas and speed limited areas, as well as in the presence of obstacles and slower vehicles. This function means greater comfort and safety for the driver, who can concentrate on the wheel and the surrounding traffic.
In addition to its two new innovations, OpEneR enables the driver to reduce energy consumption, either by coasting, or by means of braking energy recovery for hybrid and electric vehicles. To date, more than 15,000 km of intensive testing have been carried out in real driving conditions and on varied road profiles, with consumption down by between 10 percent and 15 percent. The two partners have thus developed three technological innovations:
An electric drive train based on two electric motors, offering 4-wheel drive with zero CO2 emissions;
The new generation Stop & Start for coasting;
ESP® hev braking for energy recovery at braking and battery recharging, accompanied by the iBooster which can amplify the vacuum braking force.
OpEneR is part of the European Commission's “Green cars initiative” call for project proposals, with partners from the industrial and university worlds. Five partners are today working together on this research project: Bosch, AVL List and PSA Peugeot Citroën, representing industry, and the Karlsruhe research centre in Germany and the Galician Automotive Technology Centre, representing the world of university research.
About PSA Peugeot Citroën With its two world-renowned brands, Peugeot and Citroën, PSA Peugeot Citroën sold 2.9 million vehicles worldwide in 2012, of which 38 percent outside Europe. The second largest carmaker in Europe, PSA Peugeot Citroën recorded sales and revenue of €55.4 billion in 2012. The Group is the European leader in terms of CO2 emissions, with an average of 122.5 grams of CO2/km in 2012.PSA Peugeot Citroën has sales operations in 160 countries. It is also involved in financing activities (Banque PSA Finance) and automotive equipment (Faurecia).
About Bosch Group Automotive Technology is the largest Bosch Group business sector. In 2012, its sales came to 31.1 billion euros, or 59 percent of total group sales. This makes the Bosch Group one of the leading automotive suppliers. Its roughly 177,000 Automotive Technology associates worldwide mainly work in the following areas of business: injection technology for internal-combustion engines, alternative powertrain concepts, efficient and networked powertrain peripherals, systems for active and passive driving safety, assistance and comfort functions, technology for user-friendly infotainment as well as car-to-car and Car2X communication, and concepts, technology, and service for the automotive aftermarket. Bosch has been responsible for important automotive innovations, such as electronic engine management, the ESP® anti-skid system, and common-rail diesel technology.
The Bosch Group is a leading global supplier of technology and services. In fiscal 2012, its roughly 306,000 associates generated sales of 52.5 billion euros. Since the beginning of 2013, its operations have been divided into four business sectors: Automotive Technology, Industrial Technology, Consumer Goods, and Energy and Building Technology. The Bosch Group comprises Robert Bosch GmbH and its roughly 360 subsidiaries and regional companies in some 50 countries. If its sales and service partners are included, then Bosch is represented in roughly 150 countries. This worldwide development, manufacturing, and sales network is the foundation for further growth. Bosch spent some 4.8 billion euros for research and development in 2012, and applied for nearly 4,800 patents worldwide. The Bosch Group's products and services are designed to fascinate, and to improve the quality of life by providing solutions which are both innovative and beneficial. In this way, the company offers technology worldwide that is “Invented for life.”