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Code of conduct

Dear colleagues,

Why does the Hoval Group need a code of conduct? Just like in a real family, there are ground rules that every family member has to follow. The larger the family, the more important it is to establish clear guidelines, because this creates security in relationships between one another and with third parties.

Responsibility is one of our core values. It includes not only responsibility for energy and environment but also responsibility towards co-workers, business partners and society. It also covers complying with the laws in force at all times and in any location, respecting ethical values and acting sustainably. This code of conduct has been created so that we all are aware of our responsibility and we can act accordingly. It defines legal and ethical ground rules which we commit ourselves to uphold. It serves as a guiding principle for our conduct and the decisions we take both within our company and in our relationships with the outside world.

Everyone who works at Hoval has the task of discharging this responsibility and putting it into practice according to these provisions. As a result, it is very important for every co-worker to read this code of conduct attentively. We are grateful for your time and support, because it is in the interests of Hoval and of every individual.

Group Management

1. Principles of the Code of Conduct

  • We comply with applicable laws and legal regulations as well as internal guidelines.
  • We undertake to comply with basic ethical rules.

We recognise national and international laws and legal regulations as well as the internal corporate guidelines and ethical principles of the Hoval Group and comply with these. Breaches of these can result in substantial damage to Hoval and its employees and business partners. Apart from financial losses, legal consequences and a significant reputation loss for the company, violations can also result in consequences under labour law, civil law and penal law for the employee.

This Code of Conduct applies to all persons active on behalf of the Hoval Group, including the Board of Directors, Group management and all employed and freelance employees of the Hoval Group (hereinafter referred to as "employees" or "we"). The Hoval Group comprises Hoval Holding AG, Interhoval AG as well as all companies in which these directly or indirectly hold more than 50 percent of the interests (hereinafter referred to as "Hoval").

Our Code of Conduct is publicly accessible on the Internet. To us, it is important that our customers, suppliers and other business partners know Hoval's concept of ethical business activity and share our principles of conduct.

2. Conduct towards Fellow Employees and Basic Ethical Conduct Requirements

  • We respect the dignity of man and do not tolerate harassment or discrimination.
  • We treat each other in a manner that is trusting, respectful, free of prejudice, reliable, honest and decent.

We respect the personal dignity, the privacy and the personality rights of each individual, regardless of factors such as the ethnic origin, culture, religion, age, impairment, skin colour, sexual identity, ideology or gender. Discrimination, mobbing or other personal attacks on individuals will not be tolerated.

In our familial culture, we treat each other in a manner that is trusting and respectful, but also free of prejudice, reliably, honestly and with decency. We are committed to our responsibility to our fellow employees, energy and the environment.

These principles apply both to the internal collaboration and to the conduct towards our external business partners and other persons.

3. Conduct towards Competitors

  • We adhere to the rules of free and fair competition.

All employees, especially those who work in the fields of Sales and Purchasing or who maintain regular contacts with competitors, have the responsibility to know and comply with applicable regulations of competition law, such as the prohibition of price fixing or of the exploitation of a market-dominating position. It is prohibited to conclude agreements or coordinate conduct that aim at or result in an obstruction or impairment of competition. Breaches of these rules can result in substantial material and immaterial damage to Hoval.

4. Conduct towards Business Partners, Officials and Politically Exposed Persons/Parties

  • We do not tolerate any form of bribery and corruption.
  • We do not grant or accept any business favours and gratuities that could influence business decisions.

We put great emphasis on good business relationships, which we foster by means of performance, quality and our innovative solutions. We do not endanger our good reputation as a company of integrity through corrupt behaviour such as giving or accepting bribes or advantages. 

We do not promise or grant officials or persons working in the private sector unreasonable gratuities for the purpose of gaining unlawful advantages or preferential treatment. We do not make payments or grant in-kind benefits to officials, politically exposed persons or political parties.

We are not permitted to accept any gratuities if these could give the impression of trying to influence the respective business relationship or decisions in an inappropriate way. Moreover, such benefits must not be accepted in return for preferential treatment of third parties. On the other hand, local customs often require the offering, giving or receiving of reasonable gifts and entertainment or other gratuities in good faith. Such gratuities are often necessary to establish or maintain business relationships, but may still be illegal under applicable statutory regulations. To take this issue into consideration, the provisions of the Hoval anti-corruption policy shall be observed in connection with all gratuities. 

5. Conflicts of Interests

  • We always act for the best interest of Hoval.
  • We avoid conflicts of interests or disclose these in due time.

In our day-to-day work and our business decisions, we are under the obligation to act in the interest of Hoval and not on the basis of personal interests or family or other ties. The own position at Hoval must not be exploited in bad faith for the personal benefit. Therefore, we expect all employees to avoid situations in which private interests conflict or could conflict with those of Hoval. In the event of a conflict of interests or if potential conflicts of interests are imminent, employees shall therefore inform the respective supervisor or Compliance Officer without delay in order to find a transparent solution and eliminate the conflict of interests.

6. Confidential Information/Company Secrets and Data Protection

  • We protect the confidential information and company secrets of Hoval and respect the confidential information and company secrets of others.
  • We apply applicable data protection law and protect personal data.

Confidential information and business secrets of Hoval are subject to a strict non-disclosure obligation. This applies especially to business and marketing plans, technical know-how concerning products, systems and manufacturing processes, customer data, company and financial information, salary information, etc. For this reason, we treat this information confidentially and carefully, and also avoid accidental disclosure.

Personal data of employees and business partners are treated in strict compliance with statutory regulations. We only collect, store, process and use personal data for legitimate purposes and in compliance with statutory regulations.

Detailed information on the handling of electronic data is available in the internal policy "Use of Information and Telecommunication Technology", which is binding for all employees.

7. Financial Integrity and Protection of Assets

  • We make sure that financial documents are in accordance with accounting regulations and give a true picture of the business activity.
  • We respect and protect the assets of Hoval, including intellectual property.
  • Hoval supports the war on money laundering, fraud and tax offences.

We ensure careful and complete documentation of the business processes and thus ensure that the financial documents and accounts are in accordance with the statutory and Hoval-specific accounting standards and give a true picture of the results of the business activity. We never participate in fraudulent or other unlawful activities and do not support money laundering.

We treat the property and assets of Hoval with care and only use these for the intended purpose. We protect them from loss, damage, abuse, theft, fraud and other impairment. This applies both to tangible and to intangible assets.

8. Environment, Quality, Safety, Health

  • We assume responsibility for energy and the environment.
  • We are responsible for the quality of our products, systems and services.
  • We ensure a safe working environment that does not endanger the health.

At Hoval, responsibility for energy and the environment has a long tradition and enjoys high priority in our thinking and actions. We develop and produce indoor climate solutions (heating, cooling, ventilation) that protect the environment thanks to innovative technologies. We undertake to continually reduce the harmful effects on the environments and thus leave behind an intact ecological structure for the benefit of coming generations.

The quality of our products, systems and services is of great importance for the market success of Hoval. All employees can do their part by assuming responsibility for the quality of their work and constantly further developing it. Executives are under the obligation to demand and enforce quality.

Hoval, all superiors and employees are responsible for the health and safety at the workplace. To this end, strict compliance with applicable laws and legal regulations as well as internal safety standards is a must. Employees are also expected to show initiative, to promote constant improvement and be aware of dangers.

9. Reports and Handling of Breaches, Personal Responsibility

  • We undertake to comply with this Code of Conduct and to support it.
  • We do not tolerate any breaches of this Code.
  • We assume responsibility for our integrity and ask for guidance in cases of doubt.

Employees may report all practices and activities that they believe to be inappropriate according to this Code or even illegal. Reports of potential breaches can be submitted to the supervisor, to the senior executive level including the Group Management, to the Compliance Officer or (anonymously) to the Compliance Board. The contact details are available in the intranet.

Employees can rest assured that reported issues will be treated as confidential, and investigations will be conducted. Hoval does not tolerate any measures against employees who submit reports in good faith, but also protects the rights of wrongly accused persons. Careless incrimination of other employees is not permitted, and doing so for the purpose of wrongfully accusing others also constitutes a breach of the Code of Conduct.
For the protection of Hoval and its employees, breaches of the Code of Conduct are not tolerated. Non-compliance can entail disciplinary measures up to dismissal as well as measures under civil and penal law.

Each employee is responsible for complying with the regulations of this Code of Conduct and consulting the supervisor or the Compliance Officers in cases of doubt.