Darmstadt, December 3, 2014 – Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, a leading company for innovative and top-quality high-tech products in the pharmaceutical, chemical and life science sectors, today announced that it has joined the “Together for Sustainability” (TfS) network of multinational companies dedicated to improving the supply chain with respect to environmental, compliance and social standards. The objective of the network, which was established in 2011, is to harmonize supplier assessments and audits worldwide and to foster the responsible procurement of goods and services. By joining TfS, Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, is underscoring the importance of supplier management as part of its corporate responsibility.

“When it comes to complying with social and ecological standards, we have very high expectations of our suppliers. In addition, we are constantly working to further develop our procurement strategy in alignment with corporate responsibility criteria. The TfS network offers a convincing concept for this,” said Friedhelm Felten, Chief Procurement Officer of the Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany.

As a member of the TfS network, the company will use third parties to conduct sustainability assessments and audits of suppliers. The suppliers will be assessed on environmental, health and safety aspects, labor and human rights as well as ethical company management.

The results will be shared and used jointly within the network, offering both customers and suppliers efficiency advantages. Instead of individual assessment processes with different customers, in the future suppliers can undergo a single audit or assessment recognized by all TfS members.

For its business activities, Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, needs raw materials, packaging materials, technical products, components and services; in 2013, the company sourced all these purchases from more than 60,000 suppliers in over 120 countries worldwide. Of the goods and services (including R&D services) procured in 2013, the company purchased 54% from suppliers based in EU countries and 33% from suppliers in OECD countries outside the EU. Suppliers in non-OECD countries outside the EU provided the remaining 13%.

More information is available on both the Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, and the Together for Sustainability websites.