Ethics Office

Freudenberg Group Whistleblower System and Complaints Procedure

What is the purpose of the Ethics Offices?

The Ethics Offices are a confidential contact center for all Freudenberg employees and third parties (i.e. individuals outside the Freudenberg Group, such as suppliers or customers) who would like to report an actual or imminent violation of the law or of our Business or Guiding Principles. 

The purpose of the Ethics Offices is to ensure that the Freudenberg Group conducts its business in compliance with the laws and its principles, thereby protecting the Freudenberg Group from liability risks and reputational damage and its managers and employees from personal liability. Detection and correction of misconduct help the Freudenberg Group in implementing essential principles of good corporate governance and support the Freudenberg Group in fulfilling its corporate human rights responsibility along global supply chains at the same time.

Who can report which violations?

The Ethics Offices are accessible to everyone: Members of a Freudenberg Group company, as well as third parties, may report any company-related violation of laws or breaches of our Business Principles, our Code of Conduct or any other internal or external guidelines and local practices consistent with the aforementioned rules. 

Such violations include bribery and corruption or non-compliance with competition, environmental protection, safety or labor laws. Information providers may also report human rights and environment-related risks and violations pursuant to the German Act on Corporate Due Diligence Obligations in Supply Chains and other similar laws that have arisen as a result of the economic actions of Freudenberg in its own business area or the actions of a direct or indirect supplier of Freudenberg.

How can violations be reported to the Ethics Offices?

The Freudenberg Group has one central Ethics Office in Europe (Corporate Ethics Office) and three regional Ethics Offices (Regional Ethics Offices Asia, India and Americas). 

A report should always be submitted to the Ethics Office closest to you. However, it is ultimately up to you to decide which Ethics Office to contact. A personal meeting is also possible. There is no prescribed form for reports.

The procedure is free of charge for you as a whistleblower.

  • You can reach the Corporate Ethics Office as follows:
    by e-mail: 
    or by post: Corporate Ethics Office Freudenberg, P.O. Box 100807, 69448 Weinheim, Germany
    To arrange a personal meeting, please contact us at the above email address.

The Regional Ethics Offices can be reached as follows:

Can reports also be made anonymously?

Yes, you can make a report with your name or anonymously. 

Please note that, if you choose to report anonymously and do not allow the Ethics Office to contact you, if necessary, the Ethics Office will not be able to provide you with relevant information or ask you questions throughout the process.

In which language can information be provided?

The information can be provided in any regional or local language. Most suitable would be English or the language corresponding to the location of the respective Ethics Office which is, of course, fully prepared to follow up on information communicated in any other language and will obtain – if necessary – a confidential, professional translation.

What happens after a report has been submitted?

The respective Ethics Office takes note of the information submitted and checks its truthfulness and how to proceed. No later than seven days after receipt of your report, you will receive an acknowledgement of receipt - if you have opened a contact option. At the latest within three months and seven days after receipt of the report, you will receive feedback on the status of the case and on the action(s) taken. Even if the Ethics Office closes the case without taking any action, you will receive a brief explanation of the reasons.

How is it ensured that whistleblowers do not suffer any disadvantages?

The Freudenberg Group will not retaliate against any person who in good faith reports a violation, assists in reporting a violation or assists in the investigation of a violation and will protect such person from retaliation such as termination or reprimand.

How is confidentiality and data protection ensured?

The Ethics Offices treat information and the identity of the whistleblower as strictly confidential to the extent permitted by law. The current data protection regulations are complied with.

Our Privacy Statement can be found under Important Documents.

External reporting channel in Germany: 
Federal Office of Justice

Information to which the German Whistleblower Protection Act applies may also be forwarded to the state reporting offices designated by law (so-called external reporting offices).

§ Section 7 (1) sentence 2 of the Whistleblower Protection Act stipulates that whistleblowers should prefer to report to an internal reporting office - i.e. the Ethics Offices of the Freudenberg Group - in cases where effective internal action can be taken against the violation and they do not fear reprisals.

Further information on external reporting offices can be found on the homepage of the Federal Office of Justice.

External reporting channels for the EU

In the respective EU member states in which the Freudenberg Group is located, the following authorities also accept information as external reporting channels.

Important documents