Axel Springer is committed to responsible corporate governance. Alongside entrepreneurship and creativity, integrity is a core value of the company and the foundation of the corporate culture. Axel Springer resolutely opposes any form of corruption or other manifestations of white-collar crime and any form of violation of the law. The appointment of the external ombudspersons is a component of the Compliance Management System with which Axel Springer SE aims to prevent, identify and sanction legal violations in the corporate context.

Tasks of the ombudspersons

The ombudspersons are appointed for employees of Axel Springer SE who can provide information in confidence about corruption, other acts of economic crime to other significant violations of law or internal rules.

Whistleblowers who provide a report in good faith will not be disadvantaged in any way. The Whistleblowing-service may not be used to knowingly provide false or defamatory reports or information.

Included are Axel Springer SE and all controlled companies of the Axel Springer Group in Germany and abroad.

Employees of the Axel Springer Group can report possible misconduct or indications of improper business conduct directly to the ombudsperson - securely and in attorney-client confidentiality.

The scope of duties of the ombudspersons is limited to receiving reports on criminal offenses, administrative offenses, and other violations of law or rules, e.g. against internal company guidelines of weight.

The ombudspersons are also commissioned and authorized to provide employees of the companies of the Axel Springer Group with information on matters relating to compliance, if this is to be done under the special confidentiality of the Whistleblowing system.

Beyond this, however, the ombudspersons are not a general complaints office.


For persons who wish to contact Attorney Hoffmeister or Attorney Dr. Auffermann as ombudsperson of Axel Springer SE, a special e-mail address has been set up and a separate telephone number has been activated. Outside the business hours of the attorney's office, an answering machine will take messages. This answering machine will only be listened to by the above-mentioned ombudspersons. The ombudsperson will then get back to you immediately. A personal conversation with the ombudsperson is also possible after an appointment has been made.

The ombudsperson will only pass on the information to the company if a whistleblower expressly permits this. If a whistleblower so wishes, his/her name will not be mentioned, but the matter will be reported anonymously.

Whistleblowers will not only receive an immediate acknowledgement of receipt, but will also receive feedback on the content of the report before three months have elapsed at the latest, stating what action has been taken in response to their report and what the outcome has been.

Contacting the ombudsperson is risk-free for a whistleblower who is still undecided. He/she can still decide afterwards that the ombudsperson should maintain silence.

The ombudspersons are legal appointess of Axel Springer SE. They may never give legal advice to a whistleblower which is contrary to the interests of Axel Springer SE or the interests of the involved companies of the Axel Springer SE group of companies. However, they are instructed to explain to whistleblowers the internal company procedure to be initiated in response to their information.


Sophia Hoffmeister
Dr. Niklas Auffermann

030 31 86 85 936

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Please also read our privacy notice on the FS-PP whistleblower system.

Portrait Sophia Hoffmeister small Portrait Dr Auffermann