Corporate Responsibility

The “Corporate Responsibility” chapter covers the material topics of responsible corporate management and supply chain responsibility , which report among other things on compliance and anti-corruption and on respect for human rights.

  • GRI 2-23

United Internet considers itself to have an obligation to ensure the Group’s continued existence by managing it responsibly and for the long term. This means complying with all relevant laws, regulations, standards, and ethical practices. Its defined Corporate Values, its Leadership Principles, and the Code of Conduct serve as the basis for enabling fair, respectful dealings with all stakeholder groups and for preventing corrupt business practices.

  • GRI 2-24

For United Internet, compliance is the precondition for doing business successfully in the long term and hence an integral part of all Group activities. The Code of Conduct for employees summarizes the key rules and lays the foundations for lawful and ethically unobjectionable behavior. It contains instructions on how to ensure fair competition and anti-corruption, and gives concrete recommendations for actions.

For United Internet, responsible corporate governance does not stop at its own activities.

United Internet considers supply chain responsibility – especially in the areas of environmental protection, and labor and human rights – to be a material topic since it does business not only in its home market of Germany but also in other European countries and North America. Human rights comprise not only fundamental rights such as the rights to life, freedom, and equality, but also a wide range of aspects from the world of work, such as the prohibition on discrimination and (“modern”) slavery, and the right to rest. Other aspects relate to the internet and the digital arena; these include freedom of opinion and information, and the protection of privacy.

What is more, external regulatory factors are increasingly putting the spotlight on this topic and on the expectation that the Company will examine the way it works with business partners and suppliers. Measures such as the German government's National Action Plan for the Implementation of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (“NAP”) and the German Supply Chain Due Diligence Act (Lieferkettensorgfaltspflichtengesetz – LkSG), which entered into force in January 2023, should be mentioned here.

The basic principle regarding business partnerships and supplier relationships is that companies in Germany are subject to the same strict statutory requirements as United Internet itself. In addition, telecommunications is largely a regulated market. The integrity of United Internet’s business partners is essential, since negative events could reflect on United Internet and hence lead to market and reputational risks.

Contribution to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation.