The report documents BASF’s economic, ecological and social performance and shows how sustainability contributes to corporate success even in times of economic difficulty. For example, energy efficiency studies conducted by BASF in 2009 discovered extensive potential savings: more than €10 million at the Ludwigshafen site alone, and another approximately €25 million at the seven largest Asian sites. In North America, measures already implemented last year are saving the company approximately €4 million in energy costs. These savings also mean significantly lower carbon emissions to the environment.
Energy storage is another area where the company and society gain long-term mutual benefit: in collaboration with partners, BASF plans to develop cathode materials for more efficient and higher-performance lithium ion batteries and so contribute to future electric cars.
BASF measures its performance on the basis of clearly defined, in most cases long-term targets and reports annually on the extent to which those targets have been achieved. Thus, in the year of crisis 2009, the company still achieved an EBITDA margin in excess of 14%. Cash flow from operations rose by €1.3 billion to a record level of almost €6.3 billion. Overall, BASF narrowly missed its target of earning a premium on its cost of capital because of the cost of the Ciba integration. Lost-time industrial accidents per million working hours dropped by 46%, and the proportion of senior managers with international experience rose to 77% (in each case versus the respective baseline year).
Last year again, BASF achieved external recognition for its sustainable development strategy and its implementation in the company from a number of sources: for the ninth time running, the company was listed in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index and tops the Materials sector of the prestigious Carbon Disclosure Leadership Index. In addition, BASF headed Institute for Ecological Economy Research (IÖW) and future e.V. rankings for the title of best German sustainability report 2008.
The Report 2009 is available on the internet as from tomorrow at www.basf.com/report. The online report comes with numerous service features including an interactive statistics comparison, a keyword search facility and a download manager. Readers can use the interactive comparison function to select individual parameters and periods and display the results in the form of a diagram. This year for the first time, parts of the BASF report can be downloaded as audio books/MP3 files.
BASF is the world’s leading chemical company: The Chemical Company. Its portfolio ranges from chemicals, plastics and performance products to agricultural products, fine chemicals as well as oil and gas. As a reliable partner BASF creates chemistry to help its customers in virtually all industries to be more successful. With its high-value products and intelligent solutions, BASF plays an important role in finding answers to global challenges such as climate protection, energy efficiency, nutrition and mobility. BASF posted sales of more than €50 billion in 2009 and had approximately 105,000 employees as of the end of the year. BASF shares are traded on the stock exchanges in Frankfurt (BAS), London (BFA) and Zurich (AN).