Deutsche Bank is an “ international universal bank” which has its headquarters in Germany, Frankfurt. This bank was founded in the year 1870 in Germany where it acted as a specialist foreign trade bank in Berlin. Deutsche Bank’s statute which was adopted in the same year by the Prussian government gave the bank a banking license after which it officially began operating. This statute emphasized more on foreign business and it stated that:
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“ The object of the company is to transact banking business of all kinds, in particular to promote and facilitate trade relations between Germany and other European countries and overseas markets” (Deutsche Bank AG, 2010). The first domestic branches of Deutsche Bank were opened in the years 1871 and 1872 in Bremen and Hamburg respectively. Shortly afterwards, the bank’s first overseas foray in shanghai and London came in the years 1872 and 1873. During this period, Deutsche Bank made several oversea investments in South and North America, Turkey and Asia.
Back in Germany, the bank became very instrumental in financing steel company bond offerings. It also steered the introduction of Bayer chemical company in the stock market of Berlin. The bank’s early years were marked with rapid expansion which led to the growth of issuing business towards the end of 19th century. Deutsche Bank played a vital role in development of electrical engineering industry in Germany while at the same time gaining a strong foothold in steel and iron industries. Due to the strong base that the bank had in Germany, Deutsche Bank was able to finance various businesses abroad such as Baghdad railway.
Following the First World War, Deutsche Bank, like all other banks was negatively affected having lost much of the investments it had accumulated in foreign countries. It was also forced to liquidate some of its holdings during this period. In the year 1929, Deutsche Bank merged with several local banks and formed the “ Deutsche Bank und Discontogesellchaft”. This marked the biggest merger to have occurred in banking industry in Germany at that time and helped the bank to overcome the banking and economic crisis that were being experienced around the world after the first world war.
In the year 1937, the bank changed its name and become officially known as the Deutsche Bank as it is known today. The Second World War also had a toll in Deutsche Bank. In the year 1948, after Germany was defeated in this war, Deutsche Bank was broken up to form 10 regional banks. These ten banks later came together in 1952 to form the current Deutsche Bank (Deutsche Bank AG, 2010). Having undergone many reconstructions, crisis and making many investments, both in Germany and abroad, Deutsche Bank is today among the largest international banks in the world with offices various parts of Germany, china and United States.
It is currently expanding its investments to Middle East, Eastern and Central Europe, Latin America and Asia Pacific. It offers various financial services and products for institutional and corporate clients and also for business and private clients. Services offered by the bank includes trading, debt and equity origination and trading, risk management products including corporate finance, retail banking, derivatives, fund management and wealth management, acquisitions and mergers, and also transaction banking (Deutsche Bank AG, 2010). Deutsche Bank’s ethical policy
Deutsche Bank’s has a detailed code of ethics and business conduct for all its employees which act as the standards for ethical policy. This code of conducts and ethics is subdivided into five chapters with each chapter dealing with various aspects of the bank’s operations and its relation to the outside world as well as detailing its business conduct relating to internal operations. Chapter one of this ethical policy deals with the bank’s commitment to its marketplace and its customers. This chapter states that the bank is committed to detecting and preventing as well as managing unethical or illegal business practices.
Deutsche Bank’s actively participates in various international efforts to help combat corruption, fraud and money laundering and also helps in fighting criminal and terrorist activities. For this purposes, the bank has a “ global anti-money laundering program” which enables it to prevent illegal or illicit activities (Deutsche Bank, 2010). Chapter two of this ethical policy deals with “ commitment to Deutsche Bank’s”. It is the role of all the stakeholders of the bank to maintain its reputation by behaving responsibly and acting ethically.
In doing so, all stakeholders are expected to comply with all the regulations and laws that pertain and apply to their daily activities. Any activity that may tarnish the reputation of the bank is prohibited. Employees are also required to protect any information pertaining to the company’s private or protected documents (Deutsche Bank, 2010). The third chapter deals with “ management from management”. This chapter details the roles and duties of various management officials and the expected ethical behavior as well as business conduct.
It sets out the senior officers’ code of ethics. The fourth chapter deals with interpersonal relationship in the bank, referred to as “ commitment to each other”. It sets out the working ethics within the bank and how employees are expected to relate with each other. The last chapter deals with the banks’-community relationship, “ commitment to our community”. This chapter details the bank’s corporate social responsibility to the society and citizens (Deutsche Bank, 2010). Deutsche Bank’s corporate social responsibility and its larger social impact
Banks like all other institutions have a social responsibility to the societies they operate in. traditionally, banks have been criticized for redlining including shunning mortgages and investments for minority communities and low income earners and recently fro ‘ preying’ on low income earners and the poor whereby the banks force such borrowers to take predatory sub-prime loans despite qualifying for prime loans. As a whole, the banking industry has been highly criticized from various sectors generally due to lack of or ineffective social responsibility programs.
However, some banks such as Deutsche Bank have backed out of this trend and instituted various measures to improve their corporate social responsibility. Deutsche Bank has a number of corporate social responsibility initiatives that have greatly and positively impacted on the larger society today (Hoelz, 2000). Corporate social responsibility activities of Deutsche Bank include ensuring sustainability and validity. The bank has integrated corporate social responsibility to its core business functions.
It has a responsibility first to its shareholders, to employees, customers, the environment and also the society. One of the major goals of Deutsche Bank is to help formulate solutions and concepts via active participation and cooperation as well as solution oriented dialogue with its stakeholders and international partners (Deutsche Bank, 2010). This year (2010), Deutsche Bank of Italy in collaboration with Fiat Company helped the introduction of “ Fiat Punto Evo” vehicles that use natural power rather than using petroleum products that are harmful to the environment and our ecosystem.
These cars are thus environmentally friendly as they use a combination of methane and gas as their fuel thus reducing the amount of carbon emissions in the air with the capacity of reducing about 25% to 50% of nitrogen oxide released to the environment (Deutsche Bank AG, 2010). This is a practical example of Deutsche Bank’s commitment to sustainability, one of its major corporate social responsibility goals. One of the major impacts of this corporate strategy to the larger community is that it has helped in reducing air pollution via reduction of carbon emissions to the environment.
This was the major motivation or intention of this move and partnership with Fiat Company. Apart from meeting its corporate social responsibility of sustainability of environment, the effect of manufacture of compact cars that employ natural power vehicles has far more reaching and unintentional benefits to the communities. Unlike petroleum products, natural power products are less costly and thus consumers spend less leading to improvement of their living standards.
Deutsche Bank is also committed to offer social investments to the community as part of its social responsibility activities. The bank creates opportunities and individuals with an aim of helping them deal with or overcome poverty, unemployment and also to help them shape up their individual or communal futures (Deutsche Bank, 2010). Deutsche Bank alongside FINCA international secured a total amount of 21. 2 million dollars in support of international fund B. V in the year 2009. B.
V is a “ single microfinance network sub debt deal” (Deutsche Bank AG, 2010). This fund benefits private investors only and following its introduction, it was nearly 100% oversubscribed and it brought new investors to microfinance sector. Investors included in this fund are private investors who are socially responsible and mainstream pension funds. This fund provides funds to poor individuals for self employment services. ‘ MetLife’ is another investment project partly funded by Deutsche Bank under FINCA which is meant for the very poor persons.
During the recent tragedy that occurred in Haiti, Deutsche Bank raised four million dollars as part of relief efforts. This is also another example of the bank’s commitment to the community’s welfare and a form of social investment (Deutsche Bank AG, 2010). This approach to social responsibility has had a great impact especially on low income earners and the unemployed persons. While the intended purpose was to help eradicate or reduce poverty, the funds created by Deutsche Bank have also helped in reducing unemployment in areas where it is in operations.
This in turn leads to improved living conditions and a reduction of social crimes which are associated with poverty and joblessness. These are some of the unintentional but positive impacts of social investments of Deutsche Bank (Hoelz, 2000). Deutsche Bank also has a stake in fostering art and music and creativity for the talented individuals’ especially young and promising artists. The bank believes that inspiration and creativity are avenues that lead to formulation of innovative solutions in a person’s life.
The bank has various forms of exhibitions and awards which are given to artists at different levels. The Deutsche Bank’s year award commenced this year and the person to win this award was Wangechi Mutu, an African artist from Kenya. Deutsche Bank also enables talent development across all academic disciplines. Such efforts are aimed at helping talented individuals progress and grow in their disciplines. The bank in collaboration with University of Chicago came up with “ Booth School of Business” which was meant to expand and support education.
It has partnered with various education institutions around the world to help improve the quality of education (Deutsche Bank AG, 2010). Through realization of artistic talents in young people, the bank’s mission was to inspire them not to give up on their talents. It intended to promote their work hence improving their future lives. Such initiatives have helped most of the artists who have promising talents but have no capital to support their talents. Via various expeditions offered by the bank, young people gain avenues for presenting their work and this opens up other doors for success (Hoelz, 2000).
Partnership with educational institutions and offering sponsorships to qualified and talented persons has also helped in realization of potentials which could have otherwise been not realized due to lack of financial resources. This not only helps the individuals but also in uplifting the economic welfare of a community as well as a nation. Investing in young people is investing in the future of their families, communities and the nation at large (Deutsche Bank AG, 2010). Most of the corporate social responsibility initiatives undertaken by Deutsche Bank have been able to achieve their intended goals and objectives.
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They however have far reaching benefits to both the communities and individuals they are offered to as well as the nation in general. Value created by Deutsche Bank to local and global communities Deutsche Bank as mentioned earlier is a bank that has set its self apart as far as creating and increasing value to the local and global community is concerned. It is ranked among the best international banks in improving the lives of its local citizens and those in areas it operates.
Through its various partnerships, the bank has been able to create a difference to its stakeholders, customers and to the community. To begin with, the bank is committed to reducing the environmental pollution that is threatening to create one of the most disastrous economic changes as a result of global warming. Global warming has been on the rise and its effects are today being felt in most parts of the world. Heavy downpours, long draught spells, rising of the sea level and melting of snow are some of the effects of global warming that we are experiencing today.
With an aim of reversing this trend, Deutsche Bank has managed to form partnership with car manufactures as this industry is believed to contribute a sizeable amount of carbon emissions responsible for globalization. The banks also has plans of making a “ green overhaul” in its Frankfurt headquarters in Germany which is intended to reduce its carbon emission by 55% (Hoelz, 2000). It is setting an example to the world some of the innovative ways that can help save the world from globalization. This adds value to both the local and global communities.
Deutsche Bank also adds value to the local and global community via its various banking services. It offers and avenue for foreign money transfer in different parts of the world thus enabling economic integration and international trade to be carried out efficiently and effectively. It has also come up with various initiatives meant to bring in investors to the private and microfinance sector. This helps in credit creation and also avails funds to private developers and investors leading to economic growth. Local community also benefit from the various initiatives and services offered to them by the bank.
Deutsche Bank offers debt facilities to low income earners and the unemployed persons to help them improve their lives via investment and self employment thus adding value to their lives. The various corporate social responsibility initiatives undertaken by the bank (and explained above) all add value to both local and the global community (Hoelz, 2000). Conclusion Deutsche Bank is one of the leading international banks in the world. Established in the late 19th century, the bank has undergone various restructions, overcome many hurdles and established itself as a reliable and socially responsible financial institution.
The firm financial and strong statute under which it was established has also contributed to its continued success both locally and globally. As a local and international bank, Deutsche Bank has set a good example to other upcoming and existing banks in terms of ethics and corporate social responsibility. It has impacted the local and global community positively via its various initiatives some of which other local and international banks should emulate to make the world a better living place.