Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany sees itself as part of the community, not only at its individual locations, but also globally. In the context of our business activities, we play an important role in the community at our respective locations. We create jobs and invest in the qualification and social security of our employees. Many companies supply us locally with their goods and services. In addition to this, we engage ourselves in charitable initiative – in many cases together with our employees.
Our corporate social responsibility engagement primarily focuses on those areas in which we have specific expertise stemming from our core businesses. We are thus engaged in health care projects and support education, specifically in the natural sciences. We provide disaster relief in emergency situations, especially in those regions in which we also have operations.
To increase the effectiveness of our projects, we have consolidated our resources into three global lighthouse projects:
- Through our Praziquantel Donation Program, we are partnering with the World Health Organization () to combat the worm disease schistosomiasis in African school children.
- The Global Pharma Health Fund is a non-profit initiative funded by Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany to fight counterfeit medicines in developing and emerging countries.
- The Deutsche Philharmonie is the musical ambassador of our company.
In 2012, we invested a total of € 11.8 million in corporate social engagement activities.
In addition, our legal entities are engaged in local projects. We have defined criteria for selecting projects, and the decisions concerning specific projects are made by our local legal entities. Our Group Communications in Darmstadt is responsible for coordinating and executing the global lighthouse projects. The Executive Board receives regular reports on the progress of the projects. We conduct annual global surveys in order to ascertain the regional distribution of our social engagement, to determine our goals and focus, and to track the development of our activities over time. In 2011, we invested a total of € 7.9 million in corporate social engagement activities, and in 2012 we invested € 11.8 million.
Of the total monetary and supply donations made by our legal entities in 2012, 49% were made in emerging markets (Latin American and Asia, excluding Japan), 41% in Europe, 9% in North America, and 1% in the rest of the world.
Spending on local social engagement by region* in 2012 in %
* Excluding lighthouse projects.
This figure does not include activities that primarily serve to market our products. We document donations to patient organizations in Europe separately and publish this information on our website.
As part of a Bertelsmann Foundation project on corporate social engagement, we collaborated on the development of the (Input, Output, Outcome, Impact), a way of gauging and assessing social engagement. We have applied this method to our donation program to combat schistosomiasis, thus evaluating the progress of the project.