Compliance and risk management

Compliance focus: prevention

The code of conduct defines clear standards for the management and all employees of the KION Group in respect of ethical, value- based and lawful business practices. The objective is to avoid legal and economic risks for the Company, as well as any damage to the reputation of the brands. The Code of Compliance is continuously reviewed and updated in order to achieve a “best-in-class” standard here as well.

The focus of compliance work is on prevention by providing guidelines, information, advice and training. All employees are kept regularly updated on a timely basis through provision of comprehensive and comprehensible information with respect to the issues relevant to compliance, for example about competition law, data protection, communication, anti-corruption and IT security. In 2014, around 20 % of all employees worldwide took part in compliance training or training sessions on human rights. Employees who do not have a PC workstation are given attendance training sessions on site. All employees with a PC workstation undergo mandatory training on the basis of e-learning tools. In 2014, Linde Material Handling carried out compliance training sessions on this platform in all countries with at least 1,000 employees. During the year under review, no breaches of compliance guidelines and no case of corruption were identified.

Compliance organisation

The Management Board of the KION Group AG bears overall responsibility for the smooth operation of compliance management within the Group. The Compliance Department is responsible to the Chairman of the Executive Board of KION Group AG. The Chief Compliance Officer and the Chief Executive Officers of the Management Boards of the sub-groups, including Linde Material Handling, are responsible for the implementation of compliance. Operation of all the functions is supported by the KION Compliance Department, the KION Compliance Team – in which the local and regional compliance contacts of the Group are represented – and the KION Compliance Committee. Notifications about actual or suspected compliance breaches can be communicated anonymously, using the compliance hotline if desired. The Compliance Department works closely together with the Legal Affairs Department and the Internal Audit Department of KION AG in the course of carrying out its duties.

Risk management

Dealing with risks and controlling them are important elements of sustainable corporate governance. The overarching objective here is to make comprehensive use of entrepreneurial opportunities while controlling risks at all times. The KION Group and therefore also Linde use the group-wide risk management system in order to establish appropriate measures and make adequate provision for limiting all the major risks identified. This ensures that any projected burdens arising from these risks if they actually occur are essentially covered and the continuing existence of the Group or any individual companies as going concerns is not in danger.

The guidelines for risk management are defined in a group-wide risk guideline. The organisation of risk management is based directly on the Group structure. The risk management process is essentially arranged on a local basis. Accordingly, risk owners and risk managers working for them are appointed at the level of the individual companies and the segments.

These officers initially record the risks at the level of the individual companies on the basis of a risk list defined group-wide. Alongside strategic and financial risks, they include risks relating to compliance with safety at work and environmental standards. At the level of Linde Material Handling and at the Group level of KION, a central risk manager is responsible for implementation in accordance with the guidelines.