As early as 1887, our founder Carl Johann Freudenberg drafted his first principles of business conduct. The document forms the basis for the Freudenberg Group’s 10 Business Principles with which Partners and employees identify. One principle stipulates that success has to come from performance; Freudenberg shall not engage in any illegal or unethical business practices.

Compliance structure

Freudenberg is a company whose Business Groups are entrepreneurially-driven and operate with a large degree of independence. Along with the holding company, these Business Groups are therefore responsible for conduct that complies with laws and regulations.

Both the Board of Management of Freudenberg SE and the top management of the individual Business Groups clearly subscribe to this. At the holding level, the focus is on compliance issues of critical importance throughout the Business Groups and in an international context that could pose a threat to Freudenberg, especially in terms of the company’s reputation.

Freudenberg’s ambition is to continuously improve its compliance organization, documentation and processes. Functions at the holding level coordinate Freudenberg-wide compliance measures, thereby strengthening and expanding collaboration between Group-level units and compliance managers in the Business Groups. Among other benefits, this promotes the implementation of Freudenberg’s compliance standards, best practice exchange and the further development of compliance programs.

Ethics Offices

The Ethics Offices are an important element of Freudenberg’s Compliance Management System. They serve as a confidential point of contact for all employees and third parties (i.e., persons outside the Freudenberg Group, such as suppliers or customers) wishing to report an actual or potential infringement of laws or Freudenberg’s Business Principles or Guiding Principles. The option to report compliance violations via a channel that guarantees confidentiality or to give warning of imminent offenses is designed to oster the culture of trust and protect Freudenberg’s Values and Principles even more effectively.


Business Principles and Guiding Principles

The Guiding Principles derived from the Freudenberg Group’s Business Principles define the values shaping conduct towards employees, business partners, stakeholders and third parties.

Code of Conduct

The Code of Conduct is derived from the Business Principles and Guiding Principles, in particular the “Responsibility” Guiding Principle. It covers standards of conduct that are valid worldwide. It is designed to ensure that law-abiding and responsible behavior remains the cornerstone of business conduct.

Corporate Audit and Risk Management

Aside from the main objective of reviewing the effectiveness of the internal control system in place, the work of Corporate Audit in 2022 also focused on identifying other potential risks and/or asset misappropriation.