Bernd Kubinger: Let’s start with the topic of CO2: Würth Austria is headquartered in Böheimkirchen. In Austria, we have 70 shops, 33 of which we heat with gas, and our headquarters as well. We have planned to make a large investment in this area. We would like to cover 70–80 percent of our base load on location with geothermal energy instead of natural gas. This involves drilling 500–600 deep boreholes. The management was unanimously behind this measure, as was the group. Mindsets have significantly changed here, and it’s palpable – not only by our Managing Directors, but also by the group’s management, including the Würth family.
It can also be felt in product development. In Künzelsau, we have a center for innovation. This is where we conduct research on making our products more sustainable. For many of our products, this is not a simple task, but we don’t want to just stand back and do nothing. We still want to make an attempt. One example of this is the packaging for gloves. They are no longer packed in plastic film but are wrapped in a paper band.
Another example from a different area is our KNAPP conveyor system. We have about two kilometers of conveyor that is about 25 years old left over from our current logistics project. This will not be thrown away. Many years ago that may have been the case, but now we dismantle the conveyors. We found a partner who needs them. We will offer all the components that are left over and still functional to Würth partners in Holland, Denmark and Norway, as they all use the same conveyors as we do. We are sending them our electric motors to use as spare parts, making the most of a second life cycle. Afterwards we will measure the impact that this conveyor exchange has made in terms of sustainability. As you see, we are implementing sustainable solutions and measuring their sustainability performance using key figures in our overall logistics processes as well.