MAN People: Georg Kell, what do responsibility and
sustainability mean for companies in concrete Terms?
Georg Kell: They basically mean not causing anyone harm and
making the greatest possible contribution to society, nature and the environment.
Is it really possible
for companies to do business in a socially responsible and sustainable manner
and still be profitable?
Absolutely. No company
can be successful in the long term unless it also acts responsibly and
sustainably. We proved that 20 years ago in a large-scale study. That gave
rise to the ESG principles, the triad of Environment, Social and Governance. Of
course, such ethically responsible conduct is not the sole guarantee of
commercial success, but a necessary prerequisite. Companies that live these
standards can unleash unimagined potential in their employees and build a brand
that is credible and held in high esteem in society.
You have been
Spokesperson of the Volkswagen Group’s Sustainability Council since 2016. What
are you tasked with?
Council came into being in 2016 as a result of the emissions scandal. It was
and remains our task to keep up the rapid pace of transformation in the
direction of social responsibility and sustainability, and I am impressed with
what Volkswagen has achieved in areas such as electromobility and green energy
in recent years.
What contribution can
MAN Energy Solutions make in this context?
When I first became
aware of MAN Energy Solutions, I was absolutely amazed. I had no idea that
Volkswagen had such a jewel in its portfolio. MAN Energy Solutions’
strategic orientation with its emphasis on electrolyzers, Power-to-X and
integrated energy solutions got me excited. In my mind, there is no doubt that
MAN ES has lots of solutions that could be of service to Volkswagen. I am
thinking of the energy transition at Volkswagen production sites and the ships
that carry Volkswagen vehicles across the oceans, for example. The
transformation from the fossil era to the age of clean, renewable energy is a
mammoth task. We need infrastructure, networks, storage options.
MAN Energy Solutions is well prepared in that department. Which is
fantastic and all credit to them. As far as I am concerned, MAN Energy
Solutions is the future.
Georg Kell began his career at the United Nations. In 2000, he became the
founding Director of the United Nations Global Compact, the world’s largest and
most important corporate sustainability initiative with more than
9,000 members in 160 countries. In 2016, Volkswagen AG appointed Georg
Kell as Spokesperson of its Sustainability Council, an independent body that
advises the group on matters of sustainability and social responsibility.
Today, Georg Kell is also Chairman of Arabesque, a technology company that uses
artificial intelligence and big data to help investors make better decisions
for a more sustainable future.
The transformation from the fossil era to the age of clean, renewable energy is a mammoth task. We need infrastructure, networks, storage options. MAN Energy Solutions is well prepared in that department.
UN Global Compact
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