B21F6BB4-1C5E-4341-9402-72115F03EA26 28. January 2022

Brief interview with Christian Schmalzl, Co-CEO Ströer SE & Co. KGaA, on pro bono projects at Ströer

Brief interview with Christian Schmalzl, Co-CEO Ströer SE & Co. KGaA, on pro bono projects at Ströer

Why does Ströer provide pro bono services?

"As part of our sustainability strategy, we have defined three guiding principles: Efficiency, Innovation and Responsibility. Under this premise, we combine our business strategy with ecological, social and corporate governance aspects. Sustainable thinking and action have always determined our business. Let's take our social commitment as an example: The core idea here is to leverage our media reach, which we achieve nationwide via our analog and digital advertisement platforms, and to promote awareness of sustainable and social behavior.

We focus on what we do best: generating the greatest possible awareness through the impact of our media on the public. We therefore make advertising space available to non-profit institutions and non-governmental organizations at cost price or at a greatly reduced price, for example children's charities, non-profit environmental organizations for acquiring donations or for socially desirable causes such as the fight against discrimination, exclusion and social disadvantage. In recent years, we have supported hundreds of projects and initiatives with a media volume of more than 20 million euros per year for their social purposes and will continue to do so in the future."


What specific projects does Ströer support with pro bono services?

"We have been supporting a wide range of charitable and cultural initiatives for many years, in some cases as part of long-standing collaborations, in others as one-off aid. The main focus is on supporting children and young people. We provide our entire range of media services free of charge. For example, Ströer regularly works with institutions such as SOS Children's Villages, Kinderhilfswerk, Kindernothilfe, and Initiative Vermisste Kinder e.V. Ströer has supported the Hamburg-based association since it was founded and provides it - in addition to its media in the search for missing children - with office space free of charge.

After several years of collaboration, Ströer agreed to a strategic cooperation with the German Committee for UNICEF, the United Nations (UN) Children's Fund, in the summer of 2021 for an initial period of three years. As part of this cooperation, Ströer provides reach and presence in the public space for programmatic campaigns by UNICEF or to support acute emergency aid projects and appeals for donations. Ströer supports UNICEF in its goal of creating awareness for the concerns and rights of children worldwide as well as in Germany, raising awareness and heightening public consciousness for children's rights. Ströer is providing a nationwide presence in German cities and communities for this purpose. The cooperation will also focus on the development and implementation of joint campaigns in favor of children's rights in Germany and, in particular, on publicizing and embedding children's rights in schools in Germany."


What criteria are used to select the projects that receive funding?

"There are primarily two criteria here: Firstly, we only support non-profit initiatives and projects, and secondly, we give priority to those that deal with topics such as children and young people, development aid and art. Examples include initiatives such as #wirfuerschule, Chancenwerk, the MeetFrida art project, and Berlin Partner's "Berlin Against Anti-Semitism" initiative.

In general, we have the opportunity in the pro bono area to support precisely those projects and topics that are close to our hearts and with which we share common values. This is the biggest difference to our regularly booked contracts: Here, we fulfill our contractual obligations to our public-sector, municipal contract partners to market the advertising opportunities in public spaces that have been entrusted to us in the best possible economic way. Ströer executes contracts where this is required for us for legal reasons and these are in line with the applicable legal provisions - even if the content is contrary to our own political views. When supporting pro bono projects, we have the opportunity to clearly position ourselves for topics such as child protection and promotion or cultural and socio-political commitment.”